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Quick and Dirty

River Runs Dry

By Van Smith | Posted 8/23/2006

Paloma's, the nightclub that recently reopened in Southwest Baltimore ("Club Dreams," Mobtown Beat, May 3), is in trouble. The partnership of three people running it, who were also gearing up to open a West Baltimore concert venue called Eris on South Monroe Street, has fractured.

On Aug. 11, a $279,360 judgment was filed in Baltimore City Circuit Court against two of them--Martha River Bitton Fogle (a combination of some of the many names she uses) and her husband, Robert A. Fogle Jr. The third, Jason B. Crebs, is the son of the winners of the judgment, Richard and Peggy Crebs of Catonsville.

The elder Crebs had extended a promissory note to underwrite the Paloma's dream, and it came due in April. Court documents state that the judgment is gaining interest at nearly $50 per day. None of the parties in the dispute would speak on the record about it. The elder Crebs' attorney, Maureen Murphy, says she "can't comment because of the pending litigation," even though the judgment is a closed matter.

Court records show that River--as Bitton (whose last name is also spelled Biton in other records) likes to be called--already has at least 13 other outstanding court judgments against her, totaling nearly $83,000, some dating back to the mid-'90s.

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