After Arrests, Everett Council Revokes Happy Spa License

Happy Spa

The Happy Spa was located in the 11600 block of Evergreen Way in south Everett.

Happy Spa

The customer entrance was around the back of the building.

On Wednesday the Everett City Council upheld the revocation of the business license of Happy Spa, a massage parlor located in the south end of the Wal-Mart shopping center parking lot on Evergreen Way.

Prior to their regular meeting, the council held a closed hearing for an appeal by the owners of Happy Spa over their license revocation. The license had been revoked in June. The closed hearing is unusual but it was determined that to protect the identity of the undercover police officers testifying, that was the best way to proceed.

The action by the city council was civil and sent multiple questions Wednesday night to the city that were answered by Meghan Pembroke, public information officer for the City of Everett…

In an unusual closed hearing prior to the City Council meeting tonight, the Everett City Council took action to revoke the license of an Everett business. In checking with city attorney Jim Iles the hearing was closed due to police officers testifying and a desire to protect their identity. Now that the hearing is over and the council revoked the license I’d like to find out the following…

The name of the business that had their license revoked and length of time it operated in Everett.
Happy Spa, 11632 Hwy 99. Business license was issued March 3, 2016 and revoked June 15, 2016. The revocation was automatically stayed when Happy Spa filed its appeal, and the business has remained in operation while the appeal was pending. At last night’s hearing, the Council affirmed the revocation of the license. Once the written order is entered in the next few weeks, the stay will be lifted and the business will have to shut down immediately unless it obtains a stay from the Superior Court.

Copies of notices of violation issued prior to the hearing
The EMC allows for the revocation of a massage parlor license without prior notice when an employee has intentional contact with a customer’s genitals (EMC 5.96.170). No notice or opportunity to cure is required. However, even after the City issued the notice of revocation in June, Happy Spa employees continued to engage in prostitution activities.

The time frame in which the business has to shut down. Is it immediate?
Once the written order is entered within the next few weeks, the stay will be lifted and the business will have to shut down immediately unless it obtains a stay from the Superior Court.

Were there citizen complaints or what led to the investigation and subsequent action?
Everett Police began their investigation of Happy Spa after a detective uncovered suspicious conduct related to the promotion of the business during his review of their application for a massage parlor license.

What if any appeal options are available under city code to appeal.
The business owner has the option to appeal the Council’s decision in Superior Court.

The action taken by the city council was civil. There were two arrests in connection with the investigation and will report on the criminal side of the case once the public disclosure process has been completed.

About myeverettnews

My Everett News is a hyperlocal news website featuring breaking news and events in Everett, WA. We also cover City of Everett information and items of interest to those who live and work in Everett. It's written by Leland Dart a former Snohomish County based radio reporter born and raised in Everett.

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