Some two years ago, The Social Club (TSC), a popular private organization in downtown Nashville for consenting adults to engage in sex, found itself ready to expand, and picked a suburban location in an office park in the town of Madison, on the northeast border of the state capitol.
Local residents and churches, when they learned of the intended move, were not happy, making enough of a stink to successfully encourage local lawmakers to ram through new legislation to prevent the move from taking place.
TSC owners quickly did an end run around the new laws, stating that they would instead open a church, with no sex. Rights were granted and licenses were signed. All was well until law enforcement decided to visit the premises and see how the services were being performed.
What they found brought tears to their eyes.
Two city zoning inspectors released a four-page report carefully documenting the time they spent at the club throughout March, affirming that they had been able to watch many sex acts inside the facility.
The report went into lurid detail concerning rooms with beds, leg and arm restraints, and partial walls for voyeurs, as well as widespread sexual activity observed throughout the building.
Bill Herbert, a Nashville zoning administrator, eagerly read the report.
"I was shocked, quite frankly," he declared, repeating, "I was shocked."
"I did not expect it to be as graphic as it was," he added.
Law enforcement quickly swooped in to close the club.
Filing a complaint seeking an injunction to permanently shut down TSC, local authorities asserted that a permit had been issued to operate a church at the location, but instead the owners were running a private club where consenting adults were having sex with each other.
The filing accused TSC of "maintaining a public nuisance by permitting acts of lewd conduct," noting that the owners were in violation of city ordinances and state laws which prohibit the operation of a sex club within 1,000 feet of a school or church, according to CBS-affiliate NewsChannel 5 in Nashville.
Currently permitted to operate within the metropolitan areas in and surrounding Nashville, city-licensed sex clubs must nonetheless reside in areas zoned for industrial use, and, as stated in the charges, cannot be within one thousand feet of a school or church.