Nightclub owner seeking police protection to keep people safe

Nightclub owner seeking police protection to keep people safe

COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - The owner of a Columbus nightclub wants to beef up security at his place on Victory Drive in an effort to keep people safe.

You may recall gun violence at the Carousel Lounge on Victory Drive and formerly the Majestic Club on Cusseta Road, both of which were fatal shootings. The city forced the Majestic to closed due to violence at the club.

Floyd runs the Lux, a gentlemen's club on Victory Drive.  He hires six to eight security guards a night, but says officers carrying a badge and gun would help keep clubgoers under control.

We caught up with Floyd at the club on Monday afternoon while restocking the shelves after a big Valentine's weekend.

"It's only so much that a security guard can do when it's 30 people out here causing a problem," explained Floyd.

Although he hasn't had any such shootings at the Lux, Floyd feels strongly about the benefits of  having police present at his establishment. He would like to hire law enforcement officers to work off duty.

Having officers there during a recent incident, said Floyd, probably would have helped defuse a situation when a crowd left one club and came to his place.

"They overcame security and trying to fight security while they were trying to keep them in line and tell them they had to wait to get in the club," added Floyd.

We also came across a former security guard who is now manager at the Lux. Gamaliel Coty said people don't want to obey their commands.

"I tell them you can't take that bottle outside, throw it in the trash and they don't want to listen," Coty said. 

Major J.D. Hawk at the Columbus Police Department emphasized safety is a top priority, but said their policy does not allow officers to work at nightclubs.

"It goes back to control," Hawk said. "If your establishment is known that it doesn't control then you're going to run into that problem."

The policy states only alcoholic serving places that officers can work in have to be under the current restaurant or café license.  A restaurant, according to a city ordinance, must have at least 50 percent of its sales from food.

Hawk says if places would work within the guidelines of serving alcohol, they shouldn't have a problem and if they need police, they can always call 911.

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