#1  
Old 19th December 2007, 09:44 PM
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Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 3
bath house

why are gay bath houses safe for sex, but not adult bookstores? I can get arrested at an ABS for sex, but if i'm at a bathhouse, it's ok to be naked and fucking. Why is this?

And why don't ABS's go to a membership for the theater, therefore making it a private area.
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  #2  
Old 2nd January 2008, 07:27 AM
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Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 22
Smile Too Bad There Aren't More Bathhouses

Too bad there aren't more bathhouses...then we wouldn't have to bother with "other places."
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  #3  
Old 28th November 2008, 06:24 PM
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Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 18
Legalities of Baths and Bookstores

Hopefully, guys are still checking in here and, wichitacumlover, sorry about the looong delay in replying. I hope you have had good and safe times in whichever (or both) of these two venues --baths and bookstores.

The main distinction in law enforcement between baths and bookstores centers on the private club nature of bathhouses while bookstores are open to the general public. An undercover cop can play the role of hapless offended member of the general porn-loving public in a bookstore. It's much more difficult to adopt that pose once he's paid a membership fee and signed a disclaimer to gain entrence to a private club which overtly caters to male sexual encounters.

In California, Penal Code 647(a), "Lewd Conduct" requires, as an element of the crime, that the conduct be in a public place or place open to the public. No public place, no crime. That's why there's no lewd conduct in private homes, unless the conduct is viewable by the public. Stay away from those plate glass windows.

Sex clubs, which don't provide the wet areas and other features of a bathhouse, illustate the point. Private membership clubs like Blow Buddies or Basic Plumbing afford their patrons that additional protection. The general public is precluded from casual entry. General public access is a hallmark, both an allure and danger, of bookstore cruising.

That's the general rule. As usual, there are some (luckily, few) exceptions. The Chute in Phoenix was raided a few years ago, pursuant to a City Ordinance which essentially banned private club nudity and sex. In that case, no patrons were arrested.

Other public places, such as parks, are generally riskier than adult bookstores, which definitionally limit patronage to adults. In some park tearoom cases, the prosecution will seek to introduce evidence that children were, or sometimes are, in the park. This gives law enforcement the rationale that they are "protecting the children". However contrived, it plays better with a jury than someone arrested for (as a straight colleague of mine put it) "jacking off in a jack off booth" in an adult bookstore.

Sorry about the longwindedness.
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  #4  
Old 7th December 2008, 04:53 PM
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Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 1
Other Laws

Law enforcement can use other laws. A "private" party at a gym in Albuquerque was raided because beer was available. Since patrons paid for admission, it was considered a sale of alcohol without a license. No patrons were arrested, but it was a very unpleasant experience.
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  #5  
Old 8th December 2008, 06:00 AM
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Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 5
Exclamation Private space vs Public Space

In ABS, if you stick your dick through a Gloryhole, you are not volating the law since you are not sharing a booth but nevertheless it is much more dangerous for arrest for lewd conduct. When you sign a waiver at a BH, you are entering a private space where you will participate a gathering that is considered within the confines of the establishment that is not open to the general public. I think Keith can answer this since I believe he is an attorney. City of Portland's ABS has Gloryhole clearly labeled outside of the door which made it the first in the nation on this progressive issue. If you are attorney, please share your valuable opinion on this issue.
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  #6  
Old 8th December 2008, 01:52 PM
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Posts: 18
Public Space, Private Space, and Gloryholes

If booths with gloryhole between are occupied by consenting adults, and are not easily visbile from outside (door closed and locked, etc.), they would be a private space within a public space, and therefore protected.

I am quite intrigued by the Portland ordinance re labeling of ABS gloryhole booths. I will check on that in the next few days. Sounds like a very progressive truth in labeling. The genesis of this would be quite interesting. Anybody up in Portland have the background story?
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