DENVER — Attorneys for a multistate chain of adult novelty stores asked a federal appeals court on Monday to force Roy, Utah, to set clear standards in a licensing ordinance, saying it is unconstitutionally vague.
Several months after Doctor John's opened a store in Roy, the City Council approved an ordinance setting operating hours for such businesses and requiring them and their employees to obtain city licenses.
Doctor John's challenged the ordinance, but a federal judge in Utah upheld the ordinance saying it appeared to be a reasonable way to combat crime and other problems that sometimes arise from the sale of explicit materials.
Doctor John's attorney Andrew McCullough said Doctor John's doesn't want to be defined as a sexually oriented business because he said it comes with a stigma that would deter female shoppers.
He told the court that the ordinance should have specific standards for how much explicit material a store can sell before it has to be regulated as a sexually oriented business.
Robert Keller, who represents the city, said the ordinance gives Roy discretion to determine which businesses should be regulated as sexually oriented on a case-by-case basis.
The three judge panel of the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, which heard the case at the University of Denver's law school, did not indicate when it would rule.