ATLANTA, GA, January 7, 2015 – by Trey Benton – Oasis Attorney, Alan Begner and Scott Bergthold, Attorney for the City of Doraville, presented oral arguments Tuesday before a full bench of Georgia Supreme Court Justices. (Video Here)
The adult club’s lawsuit seeks to allow alcohol and nude dancing in the same establishment – a practice which is not allowed by Doraville’s Sexually Oriented Business Ordinance (SOB).
Begner argued that DeKalb County Superior Court Judge, Asha Jackson, erred when she dismissed Oasis’s case back in April of 2014 based only on the pleadings. He contends judging the case without allowing the Oasis to argue their case in court took away an opportunity to dispute Doraville’s rationale. Begner also contends the trial court erred in their analysis of Oasis’s free speech challenges as well.
“Oasis has been in business with nude dance entertainment and alcohol service for over 22 years. Neither Doraville nor DeKalb County has ever issued a citation to the business and there have been no problems,” Begner noted. “The city has offered no evidence of any adverse effects resulting from Oasis’ operation.”
Doraville’s counsel holds tightly to their claim that “nude conduct in sexually oriented businesses is not protected speech under the Georgia Constitution.” Bergthold argues that the regulations Doraville has imposed on Oasis are almost identical to those Brookhaven imposed on the Pink Pony (Trop, Inc.).
The Supreme Court of Georgia ruled on Oct. 6 that Brookhaven had the right to ban adult entertainment businesses that sell alcohol. Bergthold says that Doraville has the same right to impose those provisions in their Sexually Oriented Business Ordinance that Brookhaven did.
The Oasis says that at minimum the case should be remanded back to the DeKalb County Superior Court so they can actually argue their case.
A decision on the case should be decided in the coming months.