First Exxxotica lawsuit filed against Dallas and some councilmembers, by a vendor

Photo by Danny Fulgencio
At a burlesque show, because we’ve never been to Exxxotica. (By Danny Fulgencio)

One adult magazine owner who has attended past Exxxotica conventions is suing our city and the members of the council who voted to ban the sexpo. 

The City of Dallas has been promised a lawsuit ever since its Feb. 10 8-7 city council vote (opposed by our North Oak Cliff representative Scott Griggs) to ban the Exxxotica trade show from the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center downtown.

As we mentioned when we reported that story, Exxxotica organizer J. Handy said, following the vote, that he was headed straight for his lawyer’s office.

But the owner of a “gentleman’s magazine” Chino Salas, who has worked and peddled his product at Exxxotica in years past, has become the first person to sue the City of Dallas and, more specifically, the mayor and the members of the Dallas City Council who voted to ban Exxxotica from the convention center.

The lawsuit names “Mike Rawlins, Adam McGough, Carolyn King Arnold, Casey Thomas, Erik Wilson, Jennifer Staubach Gates, Rickey Don Callahan and Tiffini Young in their official capacities as members of the City of Dallas City Council” and “The City of Dallas, Texas” as defendants.

It does not name Griggs, Philip Kingston or Mark Clayton, who have been very outspoken about their opposition to the ban for reasons related to upholding the first amendment to the United States Constitution.

The Dallas Morning News posted the entire lawsuit on Scribd.

The City of Dallas has retained two lawyers to handle the anticipated Exxxotica suit. Those attorneys are expected to handle this case, according to the News’ story.

Original post: Feb. 11

The City of Dallas is likely facing a lawsuit after voting to ban the Exxxotica expo from the city-owned downtown convention center.

Following the vote, Exxxotica organizer J. Handy reportedly said he was headed straight for his lawyer’s office.

Lake Highlands’ District 10 council representative Adam McGough was one of eight council members to vote in favor of Mayor Mike Rawlings’ proposition to ban the Exxxotica exposition, a sexually oriented trade show that has been held at the convention center in years past, bringing the city $70,000 for per event.

McGough reportedly stated that, “The truth is pornography is not just a lie, it’s lethal,” at the hearing.

Other council members spoke up, insisting that opinions about pornography or adult entertainment are beside the point. (Seven voted against the ban).

Any legal business that is willing to pay for convention center dates is protected by the First Amendment, notes Scott Griggs, North Oak Cliff representative (who is also an attorney).

He noted last week that the council has already been told once it cannot ban a legal business.“This is foolishness and a potentially unconstitutional action,” he said at the time. “Every couple of years we have to have a federal judge remind us about the First Amendment.”

Griggs added on his Facebook page last night that, “Although 15 voted today, a Federal Judge will be the 16th and final vote.”

Philip Kingston also has been outspoken about his support for upholding every legal businesses’ right to rent the convention center.

District 14 Councilman Philip Kingston also voted against the ban: “The convention, as tawdry as it may be, has no link to crime, and so I can not vote against it, especially in the mayor’s cockamamie scheme that would make me personally liable for the decision.The convention is closely linked to bad taste and tackiness,” he wrote on Facebook. “But that is an argument against having a convention center not an argument against a sex convention.”

Added East Dallas Councilman Mark Clayton (also through Facebook), “We just basically, on a moral stand, gave away money that we could be using to address people who are in the most vulnerable positions.”

Along with a slew of protesters and billionaires and the woman who the convention center is named after, Dallas Police Chief David Brown was in attendance to let the council know that undercover officers attended last year’s event and saw no violations of Texas’ obscenity laws. (Click the link to read Robert Wilonsky’s coverage of the hearing.)


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