Larry’s Suspension Upheld

Seattle nightclub owner Larry Culp lost his latest bid in court January 23rd to get his venue’s liquor license back, leaving the venue’s future up in the air.

Culp, who owns Larry’s Nightclub with his brother, filed a lawsuit against the State Liquor Control Board after the club’s license was suspended January 6th over alleged criminal activity near the hip-hop venue.

Culp’s attorney, David Osgood, argued in King County Superior Court that his clients’ right to due process was violated because no hearing was held prior to agents serving the emergency suspension at the club. The venue has been closed since, according to the Seattle Post-Intelligencer.

“If he is closed a month, two months, three months, this place will no longer be in business,” Osgood told the paper.

However, state attorneys said a hearing wasn’t requried for the emergency suspension and that Culp’s due process would be covered at a future hearing to decide if a permanent license suspension is in order. The judge agreed, saying the Culps hadn’t used up the administrative avenues open to them, the paper said.

The legal battle began after Seattle Mayor Greg Nickels reportedly wrote a letter to the state board requesting the club’s license be suspended due to the number of times police have been called to Larry’s.

Specifically mentioned was an October 17th incident in which Seattle Seahawks safety Ken Hamlin was attacked and injured during a fight outside of Larry’s, a July incident where two soldiers were beaten while standing in line, and a December 31st incident in which one man claimed he’d been stabbed during a fight inside the venue.

Culp has acknowledged the New Year’s Eve fight, but said bouncers broke it up within minutes and the alleged stabbing took place outside the building.

“I think we’re doing our job,” he told the paper. “They’re using this to close us down.”