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Club’s license voted down

In what was likely a precursor to a public hearing Thursday, the Selma City Council unanimously voted down an Alcohol Beverage Control license for Carvin Thomas, the owner of the downtown club 12th Stone, during its Thursday council meeting.

Thomas had submitted the license request for a proposed new club, located at 3215 Water Ave., called Grown N Sexy.

The new club, Thomas’ attorney Brandon Wooten said, would have been an opportunity to start fresh with more restrictive dress code and admission guidelines than 12th Stone.

“This is the point and time that I wish that members of the public would come forward and tell you what they have been telling us,” Ward 4 city councilwoman Angela Benjamin said. “But, that is what we are here for. And, they are telling us, they do not want that club in that neighborhood.”

In recent months, 12th Stone has come under intense scrutiny for a number of incidents that have been reported both inside and outside the club. Selma Police officials had requested the club’s business license be revoked, which is the reason for Thursday’s public hearing at city hall.

But, council president Cecil Williamson stressed to members of the council, and to the public that Tuesday’s vote should not be based on anything involving 12th Stone, but rather the merits of the new club location.

It is that location, that received negative reports from city department heads, who were asked to review the license application.

“We do not feel the establishment has adequate parking to handle that type of business,” Selma Chief of Police William T. Riley told members of the council. “You would have parking flowing out into the neighborhood around the club and that is already an area where we receive plenty of calls.”

Ward 8 councilman Corey Bowie, who represents the area where Thomas’ current bar, 12th Stone is located, and where Grown N Sexy would have been located, also voiced his opposition.

“In this case, I do not feel comfortable supporting this move and will vote no when asked,” Bowie said.

Thomas and Wooten will now shift their focus to Thursday’s public hearing, set for 5 p.m. at city hall. The meeting is open to the public, but public comments will not be accepted.

Police officials are continuing to investigate the latest incident to occur at 12th Stone, a fatal shooting that took place in the early morning hours of Friday. Two suspects have been arrested and charged in the shooting that claimed the life of a 21-year-old Selma woman and injured four others.
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