Judge Rules Worcester Strip Club Can Stay Open Pending Appeal

The Worcester Telegram & Gazette reports that a Superior Court judge has issued a preliminary injunction staying the License Commission’s March 17 revocation of the Platinum Premier Gentlemen’s Club’s common victualer and all-alcoholic and entertainment licenses pending appeals.

The action by Superior Court Judge Janet Kenton-Walker allows the strip club at 241 Southbridge St. to continue to offer entertainment and serve food and drinks while it appeals the revocation of its all-alcohol license to the state Alcoholic Beverages Control Commission and the loss of the entertainment license to the Superior Court.

The Worcester License Commission revoked the licenses after finding the club responsible for several violations, including staying open after 2 a.m., possessing adulterated alcohol, hindering a police investigation and charging a single patron $22,825 in credit card receipts. The revocations were also based on a videotape that allegedly depicts a now-former employee beating and robbing a club patron inside the club.

The club maintained the commission revoked the licenses unlawfully. The City disagrees.

In assessing the club’s likelihood of success on its claims, one of the prerequisites for the issuance of a preliminary injunction, Judge Kenton-Walker said it was undisputed that the License Commission never provided the establishment with written notice of the entertainment license revocation accompanied by a statement of reasons for the action.

“Equally important, while the Commission has stated the reasons for revocation in its opposition, it has not given the court any supporting documentation, such as an affidavit, minutes or portions of a transcript, to help it determine the sufficiency of the evidence presented at the hearing,” Judge Kenton-Walker wrote.

“Although the court recognizes that there may be cognizable public interest concerns in granting this injunction, the only facts before the court indicate that the Commission utterly failed to comply with the controlling statutes in revoking Premier’s licenses.”

“When the Commission complies with the statutory requirements, it may reprise its public interest contentions before the court with respect to the entertainment license, and may certainly raise such issues before the ABCC with respect to the common victualer all alcoholic license,” the judge said in her ruling.

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