Atlanta Police Chief Says Sexual Activity Prompted Gay Bar Raid
Atlanta Police Chief Richard Pennington says sexual activity at the Atlanta Eagle prompted last Thursday's bar raid in which 62 patrons were forced to lie on the floor by two dozen police officers for two hours, illegally searched, and subjected to homophobic verbal abuse, the Journal Constitution reports:
"According to police records, undercover vice officers had been to the club and witnessed men having sex together while other patrons watched. The department received its first complaints about the club in May and sent officers there undercover on two occasions before the Sept. 10 raid, Pennington said...Pennington said no search warrant was served prior to the raid and that patrons were 'frisked' for the officers’ safety. All told, nine undercover officers and a dozen uniformed officers participated in the raid. The team brought three jail vans to the bar and used members of the Red Dog unit to assist with the arrests."
Said Atlanta Eagle lawyer Alan Begner: "What happened to the customers was an assault. They were not free to go. There was no suspicion any of them had committed a crime. This is unbelievable. These customers are on their stomachs facedown in the grime and spilled beer for an hour, two hours, all this done for no apparent reason."