LGBT

NIMBY Complaints Result in Police Raid, Sodomy Charges at Maryland Bookstore

Patrons of Abington's Bush River Books & Video were arrested for the crime of "perverted sexual practice."

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A raid on a Maryland adult bookstore in May resulted in some potentially unconstitutional arrests of three men for violating the state's partially repealed sodomy law.

On Tuesday, the Washington Blade reported that back in May, the Harford County Sheriff's Office arrested nine people when it raided Bush River Books & Video store in Abington, just north of Baltimore.

Of those nine, only three men were charged with perverted sexual practice. Another four were charged with indecent exposure, one was charged with indecent exposure and perverted sexual practice, and one person was arrested for solicitation of prostitution. The statement the sheriff's office gave the Blade says that one of their undercover female officers was solicited by one of the bookstore's patrons.

"I went inside and was hooking up with someone and the next thing I know, eight of us were against the wall with handcuffs with plastic zip ties on them," one of the men arrested told the Blade. "And we all spent the night in jail. I was released at like six o'clock in the morning."

The bookstore has long been a subject of neighborhood complaints and police attention.

The Baltimore Sun reported that the sheriff's office had started conducting "spot checks" at the bookstore in late 2011, which periodically resulted in arrests of patrons for indecent exposure. One such check also found holes cut into the walls separating private video viewing booths, a violation of the county's code.

"It really deters other businesses, especially upscale businesses, from opening, and really deters the revitalization process in that area," said John Paff, the head of the Bush River Community Council to the Sun in 2012. A Change.org petition launched in June 2020 demands that the county "shut down this nuisance to our neighborhood." It's thus far received 169 signatures.

Similar NIMBY complaints appear to have motivated the most recent raid on the Bush River bookstore.

"In the past several months, we have received an increased number of concerns and allegations of a wide variety of illegal activity occurring at Bush River Books and Video," the Sheriff's office said. "We take all citizen concerns seriously, and there is an active investigation into these concerns."

The arrested men have a trial date in August. Those charged with perverted sexual practice, however, might be able to get off.

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled in 2003's Lawrence v. Texas, that sodomy laws criminalizing private sexual behavior were unconstitutional. In 2020, Maryland's legislature also partially repealed the state's law criminalizing sodomy. The text of the repeal bill, however, shows that it left in place various references in the state's criminal code to "unnatural or perverted sexual practice."

Greg Nevins, senior counsel for Lambda Legal, a gay rights public interest law firm, told the Blade that the Lawrence ruling should offer protection to the men charged with committing sex acts in a private, locked video viewing booth, comparing it to a couple having sex in a rented hotel room.

Constitutional issues aside, there's also the libertarian case to be made that businesses should be free to allow whatever kind of consensual sexual activity they want on their own property.

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  1. “Those charged with perverted sexual practice, however, might be able to get off.”

    ISWYDT

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    1. No I’m sorry, that was two men working their pectorial muscles – and this guy hears gay sex. Which means he’s either gay himself….or…. not. straight.

      Moving along!

      1. Maybe the Harford County Sheriff’s office should do a stake-out of every one of the NIMBY petitioners to see if they are or have ever been up to anything perverted behind closed doors.

        And if there are still any hard-boiled, gum-shoe investigative reporters out there, maybe they could cross-reference each NIMBY petitioner with criminal records and sex offender registries nationwide and do likewise with the law enforcers involved. And then blow it all wide-assed open for all to see!

        Let the NIMBY crowd and vice enforcers live by the rules of their own book! It’s about damn time Saul Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals was used by the good guys who love freedom!

        1. NIMBY Joe, his wife, and kids probably have a record, but the people engaged in anonymous sex in an adult bookstore are the type of honest, upstanding people you can really build a community around!

          1. You never know. Researchers have found that people screaming the loudest against homosexuality still got aroused by same-sex porn. “The lady doth protest too much, methinks.”

            1. Oh, by the way, I would only target the petitioners and the law enforcers for this investigative reporting. Unlike vice squad law enforcers, I do not consider uninvolved civilians, spouses, children, pets, or livestock to be fair game.

    2. They say NIMBY, but really, doesn’t sodomy belong in the back yard?

      1. Not mine but you do you.

        1. “You do you” Sodomy would require either toys or a very large endowment and/or a few missing vertebrae.

  2. Hardford County

    I am sure the officers were hard when raiding the adult book store, but still doesn’t change the fact that it is Harford County.

    1. Maybe a sympathetic DA [bankrolled by the Soros Group] will be kind enough to reduce the sodomy charge to following too close…

  3. “”unnatural or perverted sexual practice.””

    With the recent court rulings about sex and gender and how they no longer matter, and with public library drag queen hours for little kids, what could possible be called a “perverted sexual practice”?

      1. Reproductive sex.

  4. Those charged with perverted sexual practice, however, might be able to get off. That is what they were trying to do when they got arrested.

    1. Nyuk! Nyuk! Nyuk!

      1. You’re such a good sport! And she likes The Three Stooges too! Now that’s my kind of woman! I wish they were all like you!

  5. Is it too much to ask that they run a dirty bookstore without also running a spot for anonymous hookups? I thought gay sex is now the greatest thing in the world and preferable to straight sex such that no one need ever be in the closet. Given that, why should the neighborhood be expected to put up to what amounts to public sex? The book store is a public place. If the local Barnes and Noble were allowing people to get their freak on in the coffee shop, I would think people would be justified in calling the cops. Why should the local gay sex shop be any different assuming it is open to the public?

    1. Shorter Briggs: get a room!

      1. Yeah. I don’t think that is unreasonable. I don’t want to see straight people having sex. This being gays really is besides the point.

        1. Except for the fact that at least one pair was in a locked viewing room. The literally did have a room. The police broke into it.

          1. Not much different from the time honored tradition of getting jiggy in a Burger King bathroom.

          2. Are locked viewing rooms a regular bookstore feature?

          3. Except for the fact that at least one pair was in a locked viewing room. The literally did have a room. The police broke into it.

            This is a bit of a misportrayal of the facts. They didn’t own or rent the room. The cops didn’t go into the bookstore specifically to barge into the room. The whole notion that they can’t open a locked door on the premises is the inverse stupidity behind “they might be flushing the drugs down the toilet” rationalization of no-knock raids.

            1. Ben of Houston’s point wasn’t that police shouldn’t be allowed to enter locked rooms. It was that this was private sex unlikely to become public (at least until the police broke down the door assuring their privacy). This is literally a case of policing what two consenting adults do behind closed doors.

    2. My college had a couple of these hookup spots. Those people that meet in parking lots, etc to suck random dick get no sympathy from me. Pretend aids is Corona virus, fags and stay safe!

      1. The whole reason Gays (operative term here) meet in weird, dangerous places is because the laws frequently forbid any other place.

        For example, in New York City, pre-Stonewall, laws gave arbitrary powers to the liquor licensing board and to police over businesses where gays could possibly meet.

        If a motel, restaurant, or bar had so much as one homosexual, the licensing board could yank the liquor license, and the police could declare the establishment a “bawdy house” or “disorderly house” and shut it down.

        This left LGBTQ people no choice but to meet in dirty, dangerous places like parks, public restrooms, meat trucks in the meat packing districts, and dirty, rat-trap, firetrap clubs run by the Mafia, such as The Stonewall Inn.

        When the police raided the Stonewall and started roughing up the patrons on June 28, 1969, that was the line in the sand that was crossed and LGBTQ had an uprising.

        And unlike the “race” riots of the 1960s, the Stonewall participants were very targeted in their anger, specifically and only against the NYPD Officers who raided them and the Mafia establishment which exploited them. Unlike 1960s “race” rioters, the Stonewallers did not move on to destroy their own neighborhoods or destroy entire cities nationwide and worldwide. Pretty well in keeping with Libertarian NAP/NIFF philosophy.

    3. To discourage loiterers, I suppose they could have Jeff Dunham with his wooden friend Walter out there saying:

      “Welcome to Bush River Books and Video! Git Yer Shit ‘N’ Git!”

      But then that’s a man with his fist up a wooden man’s ass playing the role of the wooden man, so that’s homosexualand solosexual and schizoidal and interspecies, soooo….

    4. The book store is a public place.

      The book store, the cake shop, the university coffee shop, the local pizzeria, Twitter… you asked for it lefties, now shut up, bend over, and take it.

      Seriously, some religious friends bought a banquet hall circa 2010. They had planned to make it open to the public until it became understood/fashionable that they would have to host gay weddings whether they wanted to or not. They had to make it a members-only banquet hall. The bookstore that wants to host anonymous hookups can do the same.

    5. If people don’t want to see it, they don’t have to go in.

  6. if half the dudes identified as ladies they may have escaped the sodomy charges?

    1. it was in his/her ass-pussy so how can that be sodomy?

  7. If you’re going to NIMBY, a gross-old-man masturbation parlor is better than a Walmart to NIMBY about.

    1. ML gets all his fascist reading material at his neighborhood Wal Mart.

      The Neo Nazis just can’t beat their low prices.

      Always

      1. Shitstained leftie asshole only reads commie manifesto and gets his “news” from far left wing sites.

        1. What left wing sites do you think I read?

          1. You would probably fit right I. At Jacobin, except for you are too stupid. Far too stupid.

            1. Don’t read Jacobin.
              I do visit the Guardian from time to time if I need a laugh. Many of their commentary pieces are downright silly.

      2. That doesn’t even make sense.
        Are you trying to claim Walmart is selling Mein Kampf and old copies of Il Popolo?

        You’re kinda phoning in today’s invective, huh.

        1. It was a joke

          1. The clown nose defense requires that you can be funny. There is no evidence that you can be funny.

  8. Will it be constitutional if the prosecution claims they were violated anti-COVID social distancing rules?

    1. The NIMBY crowd wouldn’t dare do that. It might interfere with their QAnon “We Want The Coof” parties.

  9. I also would not want a whorehouse in my backyard.

    1. Affordable neighborhood whorehouses are something America desperately needs.

    2. Not in the backyard – next door.

  10. “Especially upscale businesses, from opening”

    Hey, it serves as a gentrification inhibitor. Silver lining, right?

    1. “Gentrification” is just Commie code for “making the place better than when you found it.” Commies envy anything that’s made better than anything else.

      The anti-adult bookstore NIMBY crowd and the anti-gentrification NIMBY crowd both need to meet and mud-wrestle on pay-per-view and leave private property owners the Hell alone!

  11. So they had glory holes between private video viewing booths. Remember peep shows? What do you think happened in those?

    What constitutes perverted exactly anyway. There isn’t anything gays can do that heterosexual couples can’t. Not that I can think of anyway.

    1. Have anonymous sex with virtually any hetero any time for any reason without protection?

      1. College was a long time ago.

    2. There isn’t anything gays can do that heterosexual couples can’t.

      Ah, the tried and true “There are no differences between men and women.” logic. Classic sign of transcendental intelligence.

      1. There’s one thing: penis in vagina. But that’s no reason to call other forms of sex “perverted”.

    3. So they had glory holes …

      This was just north of Baltimore. How do you think the Baltimore Orioles baseball team got their name? The Baltimore Gloryholes.

  12. Constitutional issues aside, there’s also the libertarian case to be made that businesses should be free to allow whatever kind of consensual sexual activity they want on their own property.

    There is also a libertarian case to be made about negative externalities.

    As free-minded as I may be, even I look askance at a ‘bookstore’ that is basically a venue for gloryhole sex.

    1. The thing is you don’t have a right to a particular property value, at least not one that trumps their right to bang in private. Externalities have to actually have to infringe on your liberty in some way if the government is to get involved, this isn’t someone dumping waste into a common river or producing so much noise that you cannot enjoy your property. You just find them icky (as do a lot of people, hence the property value concern) but that doesn’t mean they’ve infringed on your liberty in any way.

      If you don’t like what they do in there, don’t go in. It’s pretty simple.

      1. To be a drug habit, you are very lucent and thoughtful.

        And if the NIMBY crowd thinks a bookstore with private sex acts is threatening to property values, what about a same-sex couple in a regular house next door?

    2. Isn’t this just a government created externality though? If this was legal they could setup a venue for it in the open and you’d know what you were buying into, as it stands I understand being annoyed because full disclosure was not forthcoming.

      Much like drug crime and sex crime, whatever you think of the acts themselves, much of the criminal activity is a response to government action.

  13. Guess they were getting ready for the 49’ers wide receiver tryouts?

    1. I don’t get it

      1. No, no, I’m sure you do get it.

        1. This happened in Maryland.
          The 49ers play in San Francisco.

          If the joke is “there’s a lot of the gays in San Francisco” it’s not original, clever or funny.

          Angry porcupine should be ashamed.

          You have no shame. Seeing as you’re a fascist traitor who lives in shithole Spokane.

  14. “Bush River.”

    Methinks we have ourselves a new euphemism.

    1. That’s what might bave happened if the undecover female cop wanted to get off.

  15. That bookstores was so over priced they were practically ass fucking their customers

    1. Took a cue from the Amazon playbook.

  16. Those charged with perverted sexual practice, however, might be able to get off. Really?

  17. “unnatural or perverted sexual practice.”

    Well, since playing with “your own team” has been around since we were hanging by our tails in the trees, it’s kind of difficult to argue that activity is “unnatural”. Perverted of course is in the mind of the beholder…

    1. Well, since playing with “your own team” has been around since we were hanging by our tails in the trees, it’s kind of difficult to argue that activity is “unnatural”.

      Unnatural can mean both “not occuring in nature” and “acting against a/the natural order”. Tigers eat their young but people eating human babies is pretty unnatural and perverse. There’s loads of stuff that happens in the animal kingdom that humans regard as unnatural and loads of stuff that humans do that takes place nowhere else in nature that is considered natural. Humans are the only primates that don’t consider rape a legitimate form of reproduction (i.e. abort the pregnancies resulting from rape) would you argue that it’s natural for a rape victim to keep their baby?

      1. would you argue that it’s natural for a rape victim to keep their baby?

        Yes. Our human intellect allows us to rise above our natures.

      2. I would think it is unnatural and logically fallacious to package-deal consensual sex between consenting adults with infanticide and rape.

        1. So then why are you arguing that someone’s trying to make them a package deal when I, rather explicitly, am doing the opposite? Just striving to be consistently unnatural and logically fallacious?

  18. Reasonable people could disagree that a video booth is equivalent to a rental hotel room, car, backseat, or house. Wanting the government out of your bedroom is not advocating conduct in a place of commerce.

    1. Unless you are also against the government regulating and forbidding commercial sex.

    2. Reasonable people could disagree that a video booth is equivalent to a rental hotel room, car, backseat, or house.

      It is. Generally, unless the room has a bed, is detached, and/or has been occupied by the occupants for more than 24 hours, they don’t have a reasonable expectation of privacy. If your SO murders someone, comes over to your place, and locks themselves in the bathroom, you can’t circumvent the warrant by saying you’re just renting the bathroom to them. “That’s not *my* murder weapon stashed under the sink! You’ll have to talk to the tenant!”

  19. This sounds like the least boring bookstore in the world

    1. Because you’ve been misled into thinking it’s just a bookstore rather than it being called an ‘adult bookstore’, by which standards it’s not really exceptional except that it sits in a residential district that it seems the city/community is trying to revitalize.

  20. The government decides what is sexual perversion….

  21. “I went inside and was hooking up with someone and the next thing I know, eight of us were against the wall with handcuffs with plastic zip ties on them,”

    Was that part of the sexual perversion or part of official police procedure or both?

  22. Define “neighborhood”.
    Houses, schools, churches?
    Strip Mall, Jiffy Lube, Firestone?

  23. “Those charged with perverted sexual practice, however, might be able to get off.”

    I think that was the point.

  24. “Constitutional issues aside, there’s also the libertarian case to be made that businesses should be free to allow whatever kind of consensual sexual activity they want on their own property.”

    THEN MAKE IT. THAT IS LITERALLY YOUR JOB.

  25. Freedom of Association is one of the first Rights liberals destroyed.

  26. From the title of the article, I assumed it was a regular bookstore, where people can buy Stephen King books, gardening books, and the like, and that the patrons inside were shopping or reading. Maybe they were discussing a forbidden book. I was ready to be outraged.
    But no. It is a porn shop with glory holes and masturbation booths. Not even a private sex club. Or a motel. Ugh.

  27. It’s a shame the cops have nothing better to do than harass and arrest guys getting their laid. I’ve been there many times over the years. It’s fun. So yeah, hate all you want. Pfft, perverted acts. Sounds like someone’s not getting any at home. Law “enforcement” needs to get their priorities in order.

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