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The legal troubles are still far from over for the District’s very own high-end combination steakhouse and strip joint, Stadium Club.
Miya Eley, an exotic dancer at the club who goes by the name of “Frenchkiss,” filed a collective action suit against the club Friday, claiming she and her co-workers were never paid for their work.
The suit, which was filed in U.S. District Court for D.C., stated that Eley currently works as a dancer at Stadium Club and, with the exception of a few months, has worked there since 2010. According to the suit, the club “totally failed” to pay her any wages for the work she performed. The club allegedly forces the dancers to pay a number of fines to the club from their tips, which ultimately results in the dancers losing money during their shifts.
The suit states that the dancers were, and functioned as, employees, of the company, but that the owners of the club classified them as independent contractors.
The collective action suit includes all dancers who worked at the club between September 2011 and now.
This is not the first time the club has come under fire for failing to pay wages. Back in December, Somalia Odellas, another dancer at the club, sued the club for failing to pay her, making the same claims as Eley in her suit. The club later claimed it did not have any record of Odellas dancing at the club and the suit was ultimately dismissed in May, according to court filings.
Talayna Clements sued the club last January for failing to pay her wages and ” target=”_blank”>alleged she was coerced into having sex with her manager. Her cases have since been withdrawn and dismissed.
Last November, the club was forced to shutter for a day after the D.C. government seized it over unpaid taxes from another one of then-owner Tru Redding‘s establishments, TruOrleans—a scandal-plagued H Street NE restaurant that is now closed. The owners paid the more than $100,000 in unpaid taxes—-much of it reportedly in $1 bills—-and it reopened soon after.
Redding tells City Desk today that he no longer owns the club and did not know about the suit. Records from the Alcoholic Beverage Regulation Administration indicate that the club is under new ownership.
One of the new owners, Rudy Cline Thomas, did not immediately return a request for comment.
Read the suit below. Below that, read Stadium Club’s response to Somalia Odellas’ suit from February:
Photo by Darrow Montgomery