A state court decision has restored the only jiggle joint to Hunts Point.
The New York State Supreme Court vacated the State Liquor Authority’s cancelation of the liquor license for Platinum Pleasures, the peninsula’s last strip club, in a ruling by the court’s First Department filed on Tuesday, March 24.
Senator Jeff Klein, Assemblyman Marcos Crespo and Community Board 2 are calling on the SLA to take the case to the New York State Court of Appeals, the state’s highest court.
“Lewd establishments like Platinum Pleasures, who have time and again demonstrated they are a threat to the safety and security of local residents, have no place in Hunts Point,” said Klein. “I have fought for many years to put an end to dangerous, seedy nightclubs in this neighborhood, and allowing Platinum Pleasures to reopen would do a certain disservice to the entire Hunts Point community.”
The club, located at 1098 Lafayette Avenue, had its license yanked by the SLA on the grounds that it failed to obtain permission for a ‘substantial alteration,’ renovations costing over $100,000 including converting a dressing room into a seating area.
A majority of the justices rejected the SLA cancelation, recommending a lesser penalty.
Klein, Crespo and CB 2 penned a letter to SLA chairman Dennis Rosen dated Thursday, March 26 urging an appeal, citing the dissenting opinions of two justices, and pointing out that lewd places of business in Hunts Point have long been hot spots for violence and caused diminished quality-of-life for residents.
“Platinum Pleasures in particular has been a source of numerous documented incidents requiring the intervention of the New York City Police Department and other agencies,” states the letter. “Arrests for shootings, stabbings, slashings with a bottle, serving alcohol to minors, and criminal sale of a controlled substance are but a few of the problems we have seen at this particular location.”
When CB 2 district manager Rafael Salamanca Jr. began his current role at the board four and a half years ago, there were about five strip clubs operating in Hunts Point, he said.
The board made an effort to document all violence and violations coming from the clubs, and presented their findings to the SLA when it came time for liquor license renewals, said Salamanca.
Since the clubs closed, the neighborhood has seen a decrease in prostitution, and ‘johns’ leaving the clubs are no longer harassing local woman, he said.
At Platinum Pleasures in particular, Salamanca said that residents were seeing a reduction in their quality of life because police resources were being siphoned off to address security concerns outside the club. He called this ‘unacceptable.’
“It was so bad that a patrol car would have to park in front of the establishment every night they were open,” said the district manager, adding “So when you’d call the police for a quality of life issue, it would take that much longer to come and address your issue.”