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Erotic dancer wins battle with Key West

A woman has won a battle with city hall to keep open her business offering erotic dances to individual customers.

The city shut down Christy Sweet's Personal Dances as part of a crackdown on adult entertainment in the island community generally known for its indulgences, but she fought back.

The city agreed to let her return to the business of offering one-on-one erotic dances, and will pay $19,500 in legal costs after a federal judge indicated he was inclined to rule for Sweet, said attorney Michael Burke, who represented the city.

"I thought she should never have been forced to go through what she went through," her attorney, Richard Wilson, said Wednesday. "Her business is legal."

Sweet could not be reached for comment.

Sweet opened her storefront business in July 2002 but was ordered to close in December 2003 as the city reworked its adult entertainment code. A new version approved last July concentrates adult cabarets in the Duval Street tourist district.

"It's kind of ironic for the city of Key West to be concerned about adult entertainment, a city which reaps a vast fortune from what can only be described as an annual event of debauchery," Wilson said. "What do they think that is all about?"

He was referring to the Halloween season Fantasy Fest, which culminates in a parade that usually includes participants wearing only body paint.

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