La. Adult Store Owner Arrested, Store Robbed

Tod Hunter
BASTROP, La. — The Morehouse Parish Sheriff’s office arrested the owner of adult shop Red Door, Lori Tremaine, 39, Monday afternoon on six counts of obscenity. Bond has been set for $30,000, $5,000 for each count.

The six counts followed six purchases of DVDs by undercover officers, Morehouse Sheriffs Department Major Terry Wyatt told XBIZ, and "several hundred" DVDs were confiscated after a search warrant was issued.

"It's not the titles," Wyatt said. "In this jurisdiction, those types of movies that show explicit sex acts fall under obscenity. In Louisiana, the obscenity law is extremely detailed and almost subjective in that it's based on community standards."

Wyatt told XBIZ that the DVDs were commercially produced and did not involve patently illegal content like children or bestiality.

No one was available for comment at the Red Door when XBIZ called.

Tremaine and Brooke Mullen, an employee at the Red Door's Bastrop location, told reporters that the store was broken into Sunday night. A hole was broken through the roof, a door was damaged, the cash register was smashed into pieces and the store was stripped of cash. The theft and damages were reported.

Speaking to a reporter immediately prior to her arrest, Tremaine said she had never been arraigned on charges regarding her stores, even though there had been charges. Tremaine said she opened a store in nearby Monroe in June 2004 with no problems, but another store opening in West Monroe in Aug. 2006 led to opposition from local religious leaders.

Tremaine said the West Monroe store was shut down for a month and a half shortly after it opened. Charges were filed against her and the owner of another adult novelty shop in Monroe, Fun Depot, but, she said, an arraignment never came. She reopened the stores without the videos, and returned them to the shelves when her lawyer said all charges had been dropped.

“For the last two years, I’ve operated my other two stores with the same materials,” Tremaine said.

Prior to opening the store in Bastrop, Tremaine said she and her husband discussed the option for more than a year due to the high amount of traffic her stores received from Bastrop and nearby Arkansas. She applied for a business license and checked with the city attorney in early July regarding zoning laws. She said in mid-July the city attorney assured her that her business was legal to operate in the city and the mayor came to the store before it opened and assured her she had the right to operate.

“I understand that the preachers in town don’t want this type of business in town,” Tremaine said. “They don’t understand that there are a lot of people that do. I’m not here to harm anybody or make people mad.”

Tremaine told reporters that she keeps her stores clean and her products out of public view. The store windows are tinted. Every person who comes in is asked for ID, and people under 18 are turned away.

“I have kids of my own,” Tremaine said. “It’s for adults, period. Kids don’t need any explanation beyond that.” She said people know when they enter the separate room for videos and devices what lies ahead and pointed out that many of the same products are sold in the mall.

“I don’t even let my kids go into Spencer’s [Gifts] any more,” Tremaine said.