Va. Adult Store, Owner Indicted on 16 Obscenity Charges

Anne Winter
STAUNTON, Va. — A grand jury has indicted the owner of After Hours Video on 16 obscenity charges pertaining to the sale of several adult videos sold last month, according to Staunton prosecutor Raymond C. Robertson.

Robertson said the jury was asked to reconvene for "special consideration" to view parts of 12 different videos purchased at After Hours Video to determine whether or not they could be deemed obscene.

After Hours Video owner Rick Krial and his company, LSP of Virginia, were charged with eight felony and four misdemeanor counts of selling obscene videos.

Krial told The News Leader (Va.) that he researched what videos were sold in other adult stores before opening his own and believes that "this is a selective prosecution."

Krial also said that since the obscenity investigation began, other stores in the area have pulled adult content in fear of being arrested.

"They're running scared because Ray Robertson is handing out felony charges," he said.

Since Krial opened After Hours Video Oct. 7, local interest groups both for and against pornography have peaked interest in the store.

A petition drive even was started in support of the store, and Krial said that more than 800 people have signed it.

The materials sold in After Hours Video now must be officially deemed obscene according to the Miller Test, which First Amendment attorney Rick Hudson said will be tough.

"It's generally difficult to get an obscenity conviction," Hudson said. "But it's not unheard of."

In August, Robertson announced he would not "allow dissemination of pornographic material in Staunton," and undercover agents from Virginia State Police, the Staunton and Waynesboro police departments reportedly took part in the investigation.

Krial was the only person charged during the investigation, Krial said.