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Strip Club Owner Charged with Assault

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Local strip club owner Samuel Moore has been charged with violently assaulting a pregnant woman.

On Sept. 3 at 4:30 a.m., Donna Reynolds filed a complaint with Richmond Police against Moore, owner of Velvet, a strip club at 15th and Main streets. She says Moore punched her in the stomach at the topless restaurant and bar.

"He asked me to lie to the police," she said in a statement to police. "I told him I wouldn't, and he — knowing I am pregnant — struck me extremely violently in the stomach and then said, 'Guess you're not pregnant now ….'"

Reynolds told police that although this wasn't the first time Moore had touched her, it was the most severe. Style was unable to determine the nature of the relationship between Reynolds and Moore, or if Reynolds sustained minor or significant injuries as a result of what she alleges. Reynolds couldn't be reached by press time.

Moore, a 42-year-old Richmond resident, is represented by attorney Michael Morchower, who says that someone like Moore attracts what he calls "nuisance cases."

"A lot of people like to take shots at him," Morchower says. "He's successful; he's flamboyant. At times he has multiple girlfriends. He's like a moving target in the community."

Morchower says he doesn't know the nature of the relationship between Reynolds and Moore, but says he knows that Moore is not the father of Reynolds' unborn baby.

"Most people lie to the police," Morchower says.

A hearing date for the assault and battery charge against Moore is scheduled for Oct. 10. It isn't the first time Moore has faced criminal charges.

Since 1998, according to court records, Moore has been charged with nine criminal offenses, including raping two women, unlawful sexual abuse and battery, voluntary manslaughter, aggravated malicious wounding, use of a knife and murder. In all instances, the charges were either dropped or he was found not guilty.

Also pending prosecution are Moore's alleged offenses against the city's Department of Community Development. The department has issued two stop-work orders on construction at 2617 W. Broad St., the former site of Julian's restaurant, because construction permits had not been granted.

Moore was rumored to be remodeling the restaurant into a gay nightclub, then a restaurant with bikini-clad waitresses. Some Fan residents who live near the former Julian's have expressed concern to city officials and at least one City Council member about the building's future. It's unclear what Moore has planned for the property, though one Fan resident, Ken Martin, says he heard construction workers working inside the building as of Sept. 14. S



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