The last call for Dallas-area strip joints and adult stores just got earlier thanks to the city’s latest crackdown on late-night debauchery. Slap on the cuffs, because local pole parlors and purveyors of risqué wares are facing the music as the Dallas Police Department steps up its game, enforcing an ordinance to shutter such businesses between 2:00 a.m. and 6:00 a.m., according to The Dallas Morning News.
The long arm of the law is not just wagging a disciplinary finger; violators could be socked with criminal charges, including up to a year behind bars or a fine that's nothing to sneeze at—up to $4,000, Chief Eddie García warned in his memo to the badge-and-gun brigade. The city's bigwigs and García claim this whole song and dance is to cut down on the sin-filled after-hours violence that's been keeping cops and fire engines on their toes, according to Dallas Police spokeswoman Kristin Lowman’s enlightenment session, saying they've been "providing education" on the matter, per The Dallas Morning News.
In a court showdown that saw a group of skin-flaunting establishment owners throwing punches in the legal ring to block Dallas' ordinance, the curtain came down hard with a federal appeals court laying down the law. The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, in a chorale of judicial reason, decided that sometimes you've got to put a time limit on freedom of expression if it means curbing the crime wave, as per WFAA.
Erotic twirling and gyrating may tickle the fancy of the Constitution, but the court was clear that the ordinance wasn’t laying into the businesses with a cleaver but merely tweaking the “time, place, and manner of their operation.” And if you think the crackdown is all smoke and no fire, here's the burn: From late 2020 to early 2021, a storm of bullets let loose around these nocturnal haunts. The boys in blue upped the ante, saddling up a task force that wrangled 123 felons, picked up over 1,350 citations, and snagged a treasure trove of drugs and firearms—not to mention, the heat map of brutality showed a glaring beacon where these risqué joints flashed their neon, a boom in violent statistics that made City Hall's eyebrows hit the roof, as cited by WFAA.