YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollections


Decision on Casbah Bar Near

October 29, 1998|CHRISTINE CASTRO

The City Council will soon decide whether to revoke the Casbah bar's entertainment permit.

As soon as the council reaches a decision, it will take formal action at its next regular meeting. Deliberations will continue in a closed session after tonight's meeting.

"We've gone on long enough," Greg Palmer, the Police Department's attorney, said to the City Council on Tuesday night. "I urge you to revoke the permit."

The bar, at 632 E. Whittier Blvd., has been accused in the last year of lewd acts and sexual misconduct by its dancers. There also have been reports of fights, gunshots and public drunkenness.

In a public hearing held over four days, the City Council heard testimony from police officers, owner Eric Bewley, an Alcohol Beverage Control officer, dancers and a theater professor.

Palmer said the testimony proved that Bewley has done nothing in the last few months to clean up the bar's act.

Joshua Kaplan, Bewley's attorney, said the allegations were "preposterous." The dancing in the bar was free expression protected under the 1st Amendment, Kaplan said, and testimony showed that the bar was under control.

"You don't have any evidence to sufficiently revoke this permit," he said.

Bewley has offered to eliminate live dancing if he could keep the jukebox and two pool tables and add two pool tables. But Palmer said the dancers are not the bar's only problem.

"It's got to be an all-or-nothing revocation," he said.

Los Angeles Times Articles