Metro-East News

Former ESL city manager charged after altercation at bar

A former East St. Louis city manager, who was also the head of East St. Louis’ Department of Regulatory Affairs, got into an altercation at a local night club and was given a citation by East St. Louis police on a misdemeanor assault charge.

Former City Manager Robert Betts was at Denese’s on Thursday night and got into a verbal altercation with someone he knew. That altercation got heated and East St. Louis police were called to the business to investigate.

Betts tells one story and his alleged victim tells another.

Betts said, “We had an exchange and he started hooping and hollering. I want to apologize to the patrons of he club for any distraction I may have caused with Mr. Richard and to anyone who may have heard the outburst between me and gentlemen.”

There was no weapon involved, according to Betts.

The victim, Richard Treloar, said there was a gun involved and it belonged to Betts. Treloar said during his heated, verbal attack on him, Betts pulled his pistol.

Betts said, “I went down there to file this morning (Friday), and learned he had already been there and filed a complaint. I will have to let the judge sort it out.”

East St. Louis Police Chief Michael Hubbard did not say whether a gun was flashed by Betts or not.

Treloar said Betts, during his tirade, pulled his gun on him. “Fortunately, for me at this point, there were two people between him and me. They were grabbing at his arm and telling him to put it away.”

Treloar said he feared for his life. “I don’t know where this was going to end if the two people had not intervened.”

Treloar said Betts is a former business partner. “I was involved in a partnership with Betts in a bar on Missouri Avenue that did not end well. At this point, I am struggling to understand what happened to the money I invested. The courts will resolve this issue,” Treloar said.