Evergreen Nightclub Declared Nuisance

New Hanover District Attorney Ben David speaking at Wednesday's press conference.
Sheriff Bill Rogers (left), Columbus District Attorney Jon David (right) and New Hanover District Attorney Ben David at Wednesday's press conference. CCSO photo)

A notorious illegal nightspot in Evergreen has been shuttered under a state nuisance abatement order.

Balls Night Club, located at 2753 Macedonia Church Road, was ordered closed by a Superior Court order this week. Balls and the Edge Lounge in Wilmington were closed after investigations by the Alcohol Law Enforcement (ALE) division and local authorities.

District Attorney Jon David of Columbus and Ben David of New Hanover, along with Columbus Sheriff Bill Rogers, announced today (May 22) that the properties will be seized under the state’s nuisance abatement law.

Chapter 19 of the North Carolina General Statutes defines “nuisance” activities and provides for a civil remedy to reduce criminal acts and their detrimental impacts on the community. Since being duly elected to their positions, both District Attorneys have routinely utilized the Chapter 19 nuisance abatement statute and have brought dozens of successful cases into the courtroom on behalf of the State of North Carolina.

The judgments ultimately lead to properties being demolished. Owners can only keep the properties if they enter agreements detailing the future intended use. Defendants are also perpetually forbidden from operating nuisances elsewhere in the state of North Carolina. If the agreements are violated, the properties can be seized and sold, with proceeds going to local school systems.

Nuisance abatement laws were previously used to shut down a club in Bolton as well as a drug house near Chadbourn that was the scene of several homicides. Nuisance abatement action was also taken against Sandy Ridge Apartments in Whiteville, resulting in a change of ownership and improvements at the complex.

“Over the last several months the District Attorneys have worked closely on two nuisance abatement investigations for illegal nightclubs in New Hanover and Columbus Counties,” a news release said. “These investigations stemmed from shootings, homicides, gang activity, illegal alcohol sales, and controlled substance violations taking place on these properties.”

Sheriff Bill Rogers expressed his gratitude for all parties involved.

“I appreciate the cooperation from the property owners as we have worked to solve criminal activity at several nuisance properties within Columbus County,” he said. “I applaud the citizens of this county and surrounding areas for partnering with law enforcement to ensure their communities return to the status quo,” said Rogers.

“Nuisance abatement actions go beyond traditional law enforcement,” said District Attorney Jon David. “The serious problems facing our community such as overdose deaths and gang violence demand a multifaceted approach. In partnership with ALE we have been aggressively enforcing civil laws to shut down the illegal hotspots which serve as a magnet for criminality. I am grateful for our strong partnership with the ALE Nuisance Abatement Team, and I am encouraged by the results we have achieved working together.”

“The nuisance abatement law provides a solution for problem locations that strain law enforcement resources and reduce the quality of life for others,” said Bryan House, Director of Alcohol Law Enforcement. “I hope these successful resolutions continue to bring positive changes for residents living in southeastern North Carolina.”

The release said that over the last several years, both District Attorneys have worked closely with the North Carolina Alcohol Law Enforcement Nuisance Abatement Team and surrounding law enforcement agencies to secure abatement orders on countless properties. These investigations have taken place on hotels, gang houses, drug havens, illegal night clubs, and apartment complexes in Pender, New Hanover, Brunswick, and Columbus Counties.

About Jefferson Weaver 2095 Articles
Jefferson Weaver is the Managing Editor of Columbus County News and he can be reached at (910) 914-6056, (910) 632-4965, or by email at [email protected].