Crime & Courts

Sheriff’s Office: 13 arrests so far at Jezebel’s adult club

If you witness a crime, here’s what to do

Witnessing a crime and reporting it can be just as frightening as being the victim of a crime. Here’s what you should do if you witness illegal activity. (Nicole L. Cvetnic / McClatchy)
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Witnessing a crime and reporting it can be just as frightening as being the victim of a crime. Here’s what you should do if you witness illegal activity. (Nicole L. Cvetnic / McClatchy)

A sheriff’s investigation of the Jezebel’s adult entertainment club on 47th Street South has led to the arrests of 13 people, and investigators are seeking to apprehend six others, a sheriff’s official said Wednesday.

So far, 16 people have been charged with felony drug crimes or misdemeanor alcohol violations, sheriff’s Capt. Greg Pollock said. Charges against more people are possible, he said.

Pollock said the arrests involved a search warrant executed early Monday at Jezebel’s, 4520 E. 47th St. South. The search was part of an ongoing investigation.

About 100 patrons at the club at the time of the search were cooperative with officers, Pollock said. The club has not been operating since the search, he said.

Because of the evidence against the club, Jezebel’s license with the county will be revoked as of Aug. 28 unless the license holder successfully appeals, according to an Aug. 14 letter to the business from County Clerk Kelly Arnold. A spokesman for the business couldn’t be reached for comment Wednesday.

Of the 13 people arrested, 10 are club employees. Of the six still being sought, at least five are employees, Pollock said.

Detectives had arrest warrants for “various employees associated with the business for previous narcotics buys and morals violations,” Pollock said in a statement.

At the club, investigators saw illegal drug activity and various sex acts or simulated sex acts, he said. The arrests involved alleged liquor- and drug-law violations and unrelated warrants.

Pollock said investigators didn’t “simply target” Jezebel’s but chose to focus on the club because of the high number of criminal cases involving it – 185 separate incidents there from Nov. 29, 2013, through March 30, 2015, ranging from a “simple battery” to a shooting.

The investigation has involved several divisions of the sheriff’s office, Pollock said.

The case has been presented to prosecutors and to the licensing agency at the Sedgwick County Clerk’s Office, and that office is seeking revocation of the adult entertainment establishment license, Pollock said.

The review involves these allegations: that from Feb. 1, 2014, until Jan. 31, 2015, one or more adult entertainment employees “engaged in activity constituting a public nuisance” under the law, Pollock said, including by “promoting obscenity by performing or permitting any person to perform on the licensed premises” various sex acts or simulated sex acts.

Pollock said that in February, a Jezebel’s manager was convicted of a violation of the county code involving a loud speaker or sound equipment being audible beyond the licensed premises.

Another manager at the club was convicted in January of violating the county’s adult entertainment law by encouraging or permitting an adult entertainer to work without an adult entertainer license, he said.

Another allegation is that the club is violating the county code by operating unlawfully or as a public nuisance by promoting obscenity and violating laws on controlled substances, Pollock said.

From December 2013 through June 2015, sheriff’s investigators said they witnessed distribution of cocaine, narcotics and marijuana; furnishing alcohol to a minor on two occasions; consumption of alcohol by a minor in two instances; and permitting consumption by a minor.

Reach Tim Potter at 316-268-6684 or tpotter@wichitaeagle.com.

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