Following up on a discovery by local police that several men were meeting to have sex in the video viewing booths at the Amazing.net video store in Kittery, the Council unanimously passed new regulations Tuesday that would make it illegal to have doors on the booths.
According to minutes from the Council’s Monday night meeting, Kittery Police Chief Ed Strong said police had known about the alleged activities for more than a year.
A number of residents, according to Strong, had complained about condoms and sex toys being left along the side of the road near the store, prompting an investigation.
Officials began an undercover operation in January, entering the 16 video booths in the store on regular occasions, Strong said.
Police also took samples of material found on the walls of the booth, much of which Strong said turned out to be semen.
Speaking with a former manager of the store, Strong said employees were told to clean the booth regularly, but were not given proper cleaning equipment, sparking health concerns.
“[The former manager] informed us it was a place for homosexual males to meet people and to engage in sex,” Strong said. “On at least six occasions, he observed men having oral sex in the booths and on three occasions in the bathrooms.”
Calls by XBiz to the store’s listed phone number were not answered.
In drafting the ordinance, Strong worked with Kittery Attorney Duncan McEachern. However, McEachern made clear to the Council on Monday that the purpose of the ordinance was not to ban viewing booths altogether.
Instead, the new rules would license and regulate the booths, he said.
Amazing.net has 90 days to comply.