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Dixie, CCPD reach agreement on extended hours permit

By Staff | May 8, 2019

The Dixie Roadhouse nightclub will close at 3 a.m. on weekends once again.

The South Cape venue and the Cape Coral Police Department have reached an agreement regarding improvements in security at the club following an incident that occurred in December that resulted in an emergency suspension of the club’s city-issued after-hours permit.

Police Chief David Newlan and Sawyer Smith, the attorney representing Dixie Roadhouse, told City Council during its regular meeting Monday that extensive discussion between the two sides have has resulted in an agreement.

Dixie Roadhouse has agreed to post signage and institute a broader policy banning biker colors and gang affiliation displays; to increase the installation of security cameras to 60 and construct a new security office and home monitors; to wand patrons for weapons from midnight to close; improved ID scanning to make sure those seeking admission aren’t on a banned list; provide nine security personnel from 11 p.m. to 2 a.m. and 10 from 2 to 3 a.m. for extended hours; and to train employees regularly, among other items.

Lynn Pippinger, Dixie Road-house general manager, will be on premises for late-night bar hours.

On April 15, Mayor Joe Coviello directed both sides to continue discussions as it seemed negotiations were progressing despite some thorny issues that needed to be hurdled.

Coviello said he did not want the matter to go through the appeal process.

Monday he said he was pleased that both sides could reach an agreement.

“The police department had the public’s best interests at heart. Dixie Roadhouse is a good community partner and makes many donations to organizations that people don’t know about,” Coviello said. “I’m glad we were able to move forward.”

City Council voted 7-0 to lift the suspension which affected the extended weekend hour only.

The Cape Coral Police Department suspended the city permit after an early-morning altercation on Dec. 8, 2018, that police say involved more than three dozen individuals outside and near the establishment.

Approximately 40 patrons reportedly left the Dixie Roadhouse shortly before its 3 a.m. closing time and fought on Southeast 47th Terrace and in the public parking lot across the street from the nightclub, according to the CCPD.

No arrests were made.

The Dixie contested the suspension almost immediately and filed an appeal as per the city ordinance governing extended hours permits.

To date, the city has expended $8,990 in outside legal fees in connection with the dispute.

Staff time expended was not tracked.