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St. Petersburg sues sponsor of 2008 Warped Tour stop

Fans savor death metal band Suicide Silence at the latest Vans Warped Tour stop at Vinoy Park, in July.

MELISSA LYTTLE | Times

Fans savor death metal band Suicide Silence at the latest Vans Warped Tour stop at Vinoy Park, in July.

ST. PETERSBURG — The screaming crowds of the 2008 Vans Warped Tour have long left Vinoy Park, but the city says the bill for its services hasn't been paid.

The city is suing the Lightning Bolt Youth Sports Academy, a nonprofit group that sponsored the alternative rock concert, for $22,580.71, plus late fees, which could add up to $26,000. The city says the money is owed for providing police officers, firefighters, and parks and sanitation workers.

Garlynn Boyd, the founder and director of the academy, signed off on a sponsorship award agreement the city requires for events in public parks.

But Boyd says she shouldn't be on the hook because John C. "Jack" Bodziak, the former operator of the Jannus Landing concert venue, ran the event and was in charge of the finances.

"We were just the little man in the middle of it that (the city) is trying to get $25,000 out of," Boyd said.

Bodziak is serving a 21-month sentence for grand theft and passing worthless checks. Most of those charges were related to his failure to pay $250,165 in sales tax he owed the state Department of Revenue for his concert venue and bars.

Boyd said her nonprofit group helped Bodziak at the Vans Warped Tour for seven years. Lightning Bolt staff members handled beer and wine sales at the event, an arrangement that is required under the city's rules for events in parks.

"I'd done it for so many years, and I never had a problem until now," Boyd said. "We don't have an attorney. We can't afford one. We are a nonprofit youth organization that doesn't have any money."

She said she had not received a copy of the city's complaint because she had been hospitalized this year. The court files show that a process server noted that Boyd was hospitalized for three months.

D. Lynn Gordon, an attorney for the city handling the case, said the city will continue to seek payment from Boyd.

Luis Perez can be reached at (727) 892-2271 or lperez@sptimes.com.

St. Petersburg sues sponsor of 2008 Warped Tour stop 09/11/10 [Last modified: Saturday, September 11, 2010 4:31am]
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