District police said they shut down two sexually oriented 14th Street establishments yesterday and evicted their operator at the request of the woman who holds leases on the property.
Police went into the Paradise Escort and Model Service, 810 14th St. NW, in the early afternoon and an hour later announced that it was closed, along with the Adam and Eve bookstore, just two doors away. Both were boarded up late yesterday afternoon.
Dennis Sobin, a former D.C. mayoral and school board candidate who operates several other sexually oriented clubs in the city, said he ran the two clubs. He said they were shut down because of "code violations."
Police officials said, however, that code violations were not an issue in yesterday's action and that the official lessee, Faith McCullom, asked the people conducting the operations to leave the premises so that she could turn over the buildings to the owner, developer Dominick F. Antonelli Jr.
"The proper occupants were not there at the time and the two people that were there were asked to leave," said Lt. Robert Poggi of the police morals division. One of the persons who left voluntarily was Sobin.
"These buildings failed to meet the code . . . and we are moving to the Godfather on Wisconsin Avenue where there will be men and women dancing nude today, tonight and tomorrow," Sobin said outside the establishments.
The Godfather restaurant on upper Wisconsin Avenue NW was recently bought by Sobin after the former owners decided to close rather than fight the community to get the establishment's liquor license renewed.
According to Poggi, McCullom turned over the lease for both establishments to Antonelli, a major Washington developer and businessman. It has been reported that Antonelli plans to raze the buildings and build an office complex after leases for the sexually oriented businesses run out.
Art Schultz, executive director of the Franklin Square Association, formed by developers to clean up the 14th Street area, yesterday praised the closings of the two clubs.
"They are two more sexually run businesses that we can chalk up and say goodbye," said Schultz.
"Those two businesses are closed permanently unless we hear something different, and I doubt that we will," said Poggi.