Harris County Attorney Vince Ryan has won a court order closing a southwest Houston nightclub, jailing the owner, and fining him $5,000.
Judge Erin Lunceford, 61st Judicial District Court, issued the order against D’Place and its owner, Anselem E. Eze, on April 29th after the Harris County Attorney filed a motion showing the club had failed to take steps to reduce crime on the property and was continuing to violate Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission regulations.
In February, Ryan’s Office obtained a court order against the club and sports bar located at 9817 Bissonnet requiring the club to hire uniformed police officers, open only during permitted hours, and request proper ID from patrons.
The Office of the Harris County Attorney claimed in its original lawsuit that the club routinely violated Texas alcoholic beverage laws by operating after hours and took little action to prevent assaults and other crimes from occurring on the premises.
According to the County Attorney’s Office, on February 18th 2016 a man was shot and killed outside the nightclub. On March 26th a team of TABC agents conducted a check of the D’Place nightclub at 3:25 a.m., after the bar should have been closed, and found approximately 200 people inside the nightclub. Although there were two security guards outside, there were no uniformed policemen as required by the court order. When one of the security guards observed the TABC agents approaching, he attempted to alert the bartenders inside. One bartender stated that her regular hours were from 11 p.m. to 6 a.m. Undercover vice officers from the Houston Police Department confirmed the bar was operating after hours.
After the court order the landlord changed the locks, as ordered by the judge, and the bar is now closed.