ALTON - The owner of multiple Alton businesses and the subject of disturbing allegations is requesting several properties in Alton to be rezoned so he can turn them into a parking lot.

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A public hearing on the matter is set for Tuesday, April 9, 2024, at 6 p.m. in the City Council Chambers at Alton City Hall, when the Alton Plan Commission will meet to consider the request.

Zach Yinger, the owner of Studio 420 and Game Over, has requested the following properties be rezoned from a R-2 “Single Family Residential” district to a C-2 “General Commercial” district:

  • 1222 Adams Ct.
  • 1113 to 1115 E. 4th St.
  • 1105 to 1107 E. 4th St.
  • 317 Cherry St.
  • 319 Cherry St.

At the Alton City Council meeting on Wednesday, Alderman John Meehan said a petition was submitted by Yinger for a “zoning map amendment” to rezone the above listed properties “to develop a parking lot.” He referred the resolution to the Alton Plan Commission, where it will be considered in April after the public hearing.

Previous Ordinance Violations

Madison County court records show Yinger has been cited with violating the following ordinances on the following dates at two of the above listed properties:

  1. August 8, 2022: Violation of a “Junk and Trash” ordinance at 317 Cherry St.
  2. March 15, 2023: Violation of a “Junk and Trash” ordinance at 1105 E. 4th St.
  3. April 27, 2023: Violation of a property registration ordinance for 1105 E. 4th St.

Other previous violations by Yinger at unlisted properties include ordinances relating to “exterior walls,” “window screens,” “chimney in disrepair,” more “junk and trash” violations, and more.

Serious Allegations Made

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The allegations against Yinger were officially made public during an Alton City Council meeting on March 14, 2024. Public speakers were forced to use indirect language while discussing the allegations after Mayor David Goins advised them against bringing them up in a public form - however, the original intent of their comments is contained in the minutes and agenda from that meeting.

Cory Davenport originally planned to ask about the city’s plan to “look into the allegations against the ownership of Studio 420 and Game Over as they continue to purchase establishments on Broadway.” After the mayor’s comment, he gave more general suggestions to city officials to inform the community and abuse victims, especially minors, of their options.

Ashley Adams signed up to “speak on Facebook rumors regarding Game Over,” while Megan Weller intended to “speak regarding allegations against Studio 420/Game Over.” While none of the public commenters listed Yinger by name, documents filed at the state level tie Yinger to both businesses.

The Illinois Liquor Control Commission lists Yinger as one of the owners of Game Over. Yinger is also listed as a “manager” of Studio 420 LLC, which also uses the assumed name “Delta Vapes,” according to a form LLC-1.20 filed with the Illinois Secretary of State’s Office.

Amy McMillion also spoke at that meeting about her "ex abuser” and “business owner of multiple places in Alton, Illinois.”

“Why is this being ignored?” she asked. “Yeah, we are coming here with allegations today ... because 10 years ago this was ignored and here we are, still talking about it, and that building stands - and more buildings, and more buildings, and more businesses, and he’s allowed to run businesses."

Additional resources are available if you or someone you know wishes to report abuse, including the following:

  • Madison County Rape Hotline: (618) 452-2763
  • Department of Human Services (DHS) Sexual Help Hotline: (618) 397-0975
  • Illinois Call4Calm Text Line: Text "TALK" to 552020
  • Crisis Text Line: Text "TALK" to 741741

Alton Police Chief Jarrett Ford also confirmed at that meeting that one of the businesses in question owned by Yinger had failed multiple annual compliance checks regarding the sale of age-regulated items to minors. He claimed at the meeting that charges had been filed and those responsible had been held “accountable.”

More details and footage of the public comments from the March 14, 2024, City Council meeting are available in previous coverage from Riverbender.com.

More like this:

Apr 3, 2024 - Public Hearing Canceled: Yinger Withdraws Rezoning Request

Apr 8, 2024 - Studio 420 Sales To Minors, More Detailed In Alton Police Memo

Apr 12, 2024 - Studio 420 Included: State's Attorney's Office Announces Businesses, Vehicles, and Cash Targeted for Seizure

4 days ago - Alton City Officials Discuss Next Steps As Studio 420 Investigation Continues

Mar 29, 2024 - Chief Ford: Studio 420 And Liquid Courage Closed Until Further Notice After Alton Police Raid