BINGHAMTON, NY – Two men who are co-owners of The Colonial restaurant and bar in downtown Binghamton, have been arrested in connection with the alleged drugging and raping of 2 women last November.
Binghamton Police have charged Colonial owner 41 year-old Yaron “Ron” Kweller with one count of rape in regards to an incident occurring Thanksgiving weekend.
Colonial co-owner 33 year-old Jordan Rindgen is charged with two counts of criminal possession of a controlled substance.
Police acknowledge but do not name a third man involved in the incident.
NewsChannel 34 was in the Binghamton City Court today as both men appeared shackled at the hands and feet before Judge Daniel Seiden.
Kweller’s attorney, Paul Battisti entered a not guilty plea on behalf of his client as did Tom Jackson who is representing Rindgen.
Both men were released pending further court action and ordered to stay away from the 2 alleged female victims.
Kweller is the owner of Rent Bing, a real estate development company that provides student housing in our area.
Kweller and Rindgen are also part owners of 2 other popular downtown restaurants, Dos Rios and Stone Fox.
Last year, the Greater Binghamton Chamber recognized Kweller with its 2021 Individual Award in recognition of his contributions to downtown revitalization.
Word of the alleged sexual assaults spread over social media in the weeks that followed, prompting the restaurants to close for a period of time.
A protest calling for the permanent closure of the businesses attracted hundreds of people to downtown Binghamton in December.
A public relations firm released the following statement from Kweller last night: “The allegations filed against me today are absolutely false. I look forward to clearing my name in court.”