Current Events

HPD Strikes Again: Boondocks Hit With Noise Ordinance Citations

Saturday night, as we rolled up to Boondocks (1417 Westheimer) for the H-Town Sneaker Summit Pre-Party, something felt strange. There were cop cars on Hawthorne Street, lights blazing, and police officers roaming around. We first assumed that they were ticketing illegally parked vehicles and were waiting for a tow truck. We parked (legally) and proceeded into the party. After a few minutes of hanging out at the DJ booth, Ryan, the manager on duty, summoned DJ Sober to the front door. We followed.

Two of Houston's finest requested the identification of both the manager and the DJ, then continued to explain that they were each receiving a citation due to complaints about the noise. According to the police officer, Boondocks had been given a warning on a previous night, and a subsequent complaint resulted in these citations. A third citation was issued to DJ Dayta because he was also playing music at this event.

One of the police officers was overheard as saying that the actual noise or volume of the music was not the issue, but rather that the bass was hitting too hard, and it could be felt inside the homes surrounding the club. He advised the citation recipients that they would have a chance to explain their case to a judge in court, but if the complainants choose not to show up, then the case will be dismissed. "Unfortunately, this is where we are currently with the city," the police officer stated.

We asked that police officer if these types of complaints and citations have increased since the new city ordinance was passed. He told us that the frequency was about the same as before.

The owner of Boondocks arrived on the scene shortly after the citations were handed out. He assured the manager and the DJs that the club would pay for any fees and that his attorney would "take care" of the matter in court.

I spoke to DJ Sober after the incident and he gave this quote:

I think it's excessive to write three citations for the same thing. As one of the Djs that was ticketed, it's unfair, seeing how the levels were set by the club and Myself and Dayta stayed within our limit. As far as the residents complaining. Don't move in next to a bar, if your a light sleeper.

Of course, the first song played after the police intervention:

KEEP THE HOUSTON PRESS FREE... Since we started the Houston Press, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Houston, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
When he's not roaming around the city in search of tacos and graffiti, Houston Press contributor Marco points his camera lens toward the vibrant Houston music scene and beyond.