City shuts down Dallas club after narcotics officers' testimony

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by REBECCA LOPEZ

Bio | Email | Follow: @rlopezwfaa

WFAA

Posted on December 1, 2011 at 8:28 PM

Updated Friday, Dec 2 at 12:54 PM

DALLAS - The City of Dallas Permit and Licensing Board upheld the revocation of the dance hall license for the club Afterlife.

A six-hour hearing was held at Dallas City Hall.
 
Undercover Dallas narcotics officers in hoods testified about what they saw and found at the Afterlife, on Northwest Highway.
    
A veteran officer, who has even investigated drug cartels, said he's never seen so many people openly selling drugs.
 
“This is pretty much, in layman's terms, this is like the Golden Corral of buffet dealing," the officer said. "Anybody can come and be served."
 
Veteran officers say they can't believe what they have found, a subculture of kids dancing to house or techno music and multi-colored lights. The teens wore masks and carried pacifiers, all to enhance the effects of the drug ecstasy, which gives off a feeling of euphoria.
 
“It has become a shock to our department," an officer said. "This is an epidemic. It is. It's truly a disease."
 
The city said the owner, Mark Annis, and his employees knowingly allowed this to happen.

It's something Annis denies. He said he didn't allow the drug sales, but his solution was even more surprising.
 
“First of all, we don't confiscate anything," Annis testified. "We give the customers the option to call the police, or flush them down the toilet themselves."
 
During testimony, officers said that not once has Annis or his employees called DPD to arrest anyone, or report found drugs. And they didn't call police or paramedics on the night Mathew Allen died, after buying and taking drugs at the club.
 
“Mathew Allen was coherent," Annis said. "He walked out to his car, speaking verbally, and he left with two friends."
 
But Dallas police have arrested several people in connection with his death, and now have succeeded in shutting down the dance club.
 
Afterlife can still operate as a business, just not as a dance club. The owner can appeal to a state district court, but he says he’s not sure what he’s going to do next.

E-mail rlopez@wfaa.com

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