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'I feel bad:' Owner of New Year's Eve RV speaks about scare

Posted at 4:06 PM, Jan 01, 2021

LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — Victor Camona was hoping to make a few memories for his family when they loaded up the RV and drove from their home in Michigan to Georgia. Little did he know the wildest memory would be made during the last leg of their trip home.

“I just feel bad for people who were enjoying New Year’s Eve and having a great time in the bars,” Carmona said.

Carmona’s vehicle was the subject of a downtown holiday scare. He parked in an outdoor lot on the corner of West Short and Market streets, while the family would spend New Year’s Eve in a nearby hotel. But only six days after a bomb exploded inside a similar vehicle in downtown Nashville, Lexington police were concerned about a potential copy-cat incident. So they evacuated bars and restaurants in the area of the former Cheapside Park for more than two hours to investigate.

“Next thing I know we’re getting evacuated from the hotel and then the police came to talk to my wife,” Carmona said.

Steve Scaldaferri’s Elixir establishment was right in the potential firing line, as he’s across the street from the lot.

“Because Nashville just happened, it was fresh in everyone’s mind,” he said. “It’s an unfortunate circumstance but (police) did it, and they did things the right way."

Now Scaldaferri is trying to do things the right way. He zeroed out every tab that had been running at the time of the evacuations, and invited everyone back to give it a shot once more tonight.

“We’re going to bring in our D.J. We’re going to leave all the balloons up and leave the decorations out. We’re going to recreate as much as we can,” he said of the plan for Friday night.

Recreate everything with the exception, he hopes, of another bomb scare.

“They were very cordial last night, but aggressive as they should’ve been,” Scaldaferri said of Lexington’s police officers. He also thanked them for their work. Carmona did too.

“I’m glad the police are doing their job. After what happened in Nashville I totally understand, so I’m glad the police did what they had to do. It makes me happy that they actually take care of their citizens,” Carmona added before putting the RV into gear, and heading back to Michigan.