The officials determined the club lacked directional exit signs and proper lighting, and a rear stairwell was blocked. "If a panicked situation occurred, people who were not familiar with the place would not know how to get out," Langford said.
Officials forced their way in and found exposed wiring, damaged emergency lighting, falling plaster, open candles and weak stairwells, Langford said.
Most of the people inside left when officials entered, making it impossible for officials to determine whether the building had been overcrowded, Langford said.
Fire department officials shut both establishments for the night, and the department's Fire Prevention Bureau will be issuing citations to both, Langford said.
The Fire Prevention Bureau will also refer the community center to the Chicago Building Department for investigation.
The Chicago Police Department cited hosts of both gatherings, Police News Affairs Officer Amina Greer said.A 40-year-old man at the Michigan location was issued a citation for over-occupancy, failure to comply with an exterior safety plan and a liquor violation. At the Racine location, police cited a 35-year-old man for public place amusement and a liquor violation.