Judge rules Treasures strip club can remain open for now, despite lawsuit
HOUSTON (KTRK) -- A judge has ruled that the Treasures strip club can remain open for now, as a part of the ongoing battle between Harris County and the Houston club.
Attorneys for the city and county say they've proven Treasures is a public nuisance, insisting the management has allowed drugs and prostitution to exist in the club for years. The civil lawsuit suit even claims Treasures allows human trafficking.
One plaintiff's attorney argued, "We have shown ample evidence, your honor, that this is what happens when you go into Treasures. We've shown convictions for prostitution of dancers at Treasures."
They presented evidence of 41 arrests and nine convictions over nearly a four-year period.
That attorney went on to say, "Both arrests and convictions are evidence of knowing toleration of criminal activity."
Treasures argues that it has taken steps to curb crime, maintaining, they say, a zero-tolerance policy for illegal activity. They presented evidence that managers consistently patrol the club looking for sex or drugs. They also make dancers sign forms, saying they know they'll be fired for prostitution or drugs.
Tonya Garrison, attorney for Treasures, said, "They haven't told us what they want. Do they want the VIP rooms closed? Do they want the lights turned on? You could give an order to the judge that they need to have two guys dressed up like chickens with signs that say 'No Prostitutes.' That would be unreasonable."
The judge has decided that Treasures can remain open for now while the case works its way toward trial, but there will be certain restrictions imposed upon the club. The order states club management must:
- Add surveillance cameras and record
- Add security guards/bouncers
- Check bags of employees
- State and federal background checks of dancers
- Drug tests for dancers
- Must report all sex acts or drug use found
Stay with Eyewitness News and abc13.com for the latest on this story.
local, kevin quinn
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