Two face charges in Myrtle nudity case

Published 12:00 am Thursday, June 12, 2003

Myrtle’s strip club, C.J.’s Revenge Theatre, has caused a great stir in the small town of 53.

Since it opened in late May, two people have been ticketed in violation of the city’s nudity ordinance, which was passed one day after the club’s opening.

The two charged were Cheryl Jean &uot;C.J.&uot; Hanson, the owner of the club, and dancer Emily Rangel, of Austin.

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Minneapolis attorney Randall Tigue, who is representing both defendants, demanded that formal complaints be drawn up for both cases.

Rangel was charged with indecent exposure, a violation of Myrtle’s public nudity ordinance.

Tigue, who has defended numerous clients against similar ordinances throughout the state, said he thinks it would be in Myrtle’s best interest to drop the charges instead of going through with the case.

&uot;The city of Myrtle would be unwise to undergo criminal prosecution of an ordinance that has had such an unsuccessful history,&uot; he said.

Tigue said that only once in the state’s history has a similar ordinance actually been used to charge a defendant.

In the case of Hanson, Tigue claims there is even a larger risk in going through with prosecution.

&uot;There is no way she can be charged by a law that does not exist,&uot; he said.

Tigue argued that the charge against Hanson &045; allowing indecent exposure &045; has no basis in Myrtle’s ordinance and therefore cannot be prosecuted.

Judge John Chesterman said that Myrtle or the county have 30 days to file formal complaints. If that doesn’t happen, the charges will be dropped.

Phil Kohl, the Albert Lea attorney representing the city of Myrtle, did not return calls.