MILWAUKEE -- City officials celebrated a Milwaukee restaurant Tuesday, January 2nd, as they rolled out a new grading system for food establishments. FOX6 has since learned the restaurant's managing partner is a registered sex offender and still on supervision.
At a news conference on Tuesday, Milwaukee Alderman Bob Bauman and Alderman Michael Murphy joined Milwaukee Health Commissioner Bevan Baker in praising Stelio Kalkounos -- managing partner at the Five O'Clock Steakhouse.
"Want to say thank you to Five O'Clock Steakhouse and Stelio. It's been a great proprietor and the type of restaurateur we want to do business with here in this city," said Baker.
Baker praised the restaurant for its perfect score during its regular health inspection. A press conference was held as officials celebrated the restaurant's A grade, and officially rolled out the new grading system -- which involves issuing letter grades for all food establishments in the city. By 2019, it'll be mandatory to display the grade so customers can see it, and a C grade could get a restaurant temporarily shut down.
While inspectors found the historic Five O'Clock Steakhouse to be squeaky clean, it turns out, Kalkounos' past is not.
In 2006, Kalkounos was convicted of traveling for the purpose of engaging in a sexual act with a minor. Records show he arranged a meeting online with an individual he believed was a 14-year-old girl. Instead, he ended up meeting a Milwaukee police detective.
"There's been issues in his past personal life and so be it. People are entitled to redemption and second chances and I say that about anyone," said Alderman Bauman.
Bauman said he's known about Kalkounos' past, but hasn't had any problems with him.
As for Tuesday's event, Bauman said the restaurant is in his district and he was invited.
"I'll leave that up to the health department to answer. It wasn't my call to use their location," said Bauman.
Last month, Kalkounos' attorney requested that his ten-year supervision, which he is seven years into, be terminated. The attorney cited Kalkounos' track record since the conviction and the hardships it is exacting on his business plans.
"You`re right. In retrospect, perhaps a different restaurant would have been more appropriate," Bauman said.
FOX6 News sent messages and made calls to Five O'Clock Steakhouse seeking comment from Kalkounos. We have yet to get a response.
FOX6 News went to the City of Milwaukee Health Department to see whether it was the department's idea to have the news conference at Five O'Clock Steakhouse, and whether Baker knew about Kalkounos' past. We received this statement:
"The Five O’ Clock Steakhouse is licensed with the City of Milwaukee and is in full compliance with City and State regulations. The letter grade and seal excellence was awarded to Five O’Clock Steakhouse based on the perfect score received under the food sanitation grading system. There are no legal restrictions for ownership by the proprietor on record. The City of Milwaukee Health Department was unaware of any convictions on the proprietor at the time of the award."