LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — A popular West Hollywood gay bar has reportedly been shut down for a month over allegations of lewd behavior and giving away free drinks.
Micky’s WeHo located at 8857 Santa Monica Boulevard will remain closed through Oct. 30 after the state’s Alcohol Beverage Control (ABC) board charged the bar with 14 counts of lewd conduct and 2 counts of giving away free drinks, according to WEHOville.
The alleged lewd conduct cited in a 2013 investigation reportedly stems from alleged “over-exposure” on the part of Micky’s dancers while interacting with customers.
A WEHOville editorial penned by Micky’s owner Michael Niemeyer dated Oct. 5 says the shutdown leaves 50 employees out of work and alleges a “history of…harassment” from both ABC and local police departments.
Citing lewd conduct laws “that haven’t changed since the 1970s”, Niemeyer’s editorial appeared to suggest that Micky’s current suspension was possibly linked to images captured on customers’ phones.
“Nude entertainment including photos and other depiction of nudity is forbidden,” he wrote. “The statute (sic) of David could get one’s license [suspended], as could the images on the screens of some customers’ cell phones.
“Would the state have bar owners stand over every customer’s cell phone to look for and prohibit penis pics? These standards should be determined on a local basis.”
The editorial also alleges both ABC and local police have “worked in tandem from Prohibition to current times to systematically harass, intimidate and threaten both gay bar owners and their patrons”.
A sign reportedly seen hanging on Micky’s door next to an ABC notice of suspension in an image posted to social media states Micky’s license was suspended for “giving away free drinks” and “a dancer exposing his buttocks”.
There was no immediate response to a request for comment from ABC board officials.