If the show’s over, you should get moving.
Loiterers who spend more than three minutes within 10 feet of a nightclub door or line could be fined between $50 and $500 — and charged with a misdemeanor — if supervisors approve the bill passed by the Entertainment Commission on Tuesday night.
The proposed law, sponsored by Mayor Gavin Newsom and Supervisor Sophie Maxwell, was written in response to a rash of violence outside nightclubs that killed at least six people in 2007 and 2008 and left several others wounded.
Robin Kent, 44, was found beaten to death March 12 outside the front door of Boss Nightclub, at 750 Harrison St.; 20-year-old Sung Park died of head injuries he sustained in a fight at the same club Feb. 11, 2007. Deadly fights and shootings also took place outside Club Caliente and Jillian’s last year.
“People are going to these nightclubs, carrying guns and committing violent crimes,” Newsom said Tuesday. “This violence will not be allowed to continue, and we are telling nightclub industry officials that we are here to help you, but we are going to make some changes.”
No nightclub owners weighed in on the legislation Tuesday.
Commissioners voted 6 to 1 in favor of sending the bill to the Board of Supervisors. Jim Meko voted against the measure, saying blacks and homosexuals have been unfairly targeted by anti-loitering laws in the past.
The Entertainment Commission weighed a number of alternatives before agreeing to support the new measure, according to Robert Davis, director of the commission.
Concertgoers selling spare tickets, waiting for taxis or smoking a cigarette between acts wouldn’t be targeted by police, Davis said.
“It’s for people who have no business at the club,” Davis said. “Sometimes they cause problems, and if people are just milling about, the club is responsible for that, so they need some tools [to fight it].”
It’s time to go home
San Francisco's Entertainment Commission approved a measure that could crack down on loitering outside nightclubs.
» How it is now: City codes prevent loitering at or near public toilets and while carrying a concealed weapon.
» What would change: Loitering for more than three minutes within 10 feet of a nightclub door or line would be illegal.
» Minimum penalty: $50 to $100 fine, charged as an infraction; violator could be given community service time.
» Maximum penalty: $200 to $500 fine, charged as a misdemeanor; violator could go to jail for up to six months.