South Florida Spill cleans up from last year
A year since the party saw an alleged gang rape, this year’s South Florida Spill saw more security and less liquor, as the UP reports from the inside.
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Last year, an underground party called the South Florida Spill, took place at the Wayne Barton Study Center, less than two miles from Florida Atlantic’s Boca Raton campus. Attendees, some underage, were greeted by a table with condoms and access to ‘all you can drink’ liquor. It was also where an FAU student said she was pulled onto the center’s stage and gang raped behind a curtain.
But last Saturday, the off-campus event — which an 11-month University Press investigation revealed is tied to an on-campus fraternity — happened at Club Cinema, a Pompano Beach nightclub about 12 miles from the school’s Boca Raton campus. And this year, some changes were made.
The gang rape case was deemed inactive on April 5, just days before the party happened again.
On Saturday, April 9, after FAU’s 21st Sunshine State Classic, an annual step dancing show, was held on the Boca Raton campus.
The step show let out at the same time the South Florida Spill was slated to start: 10 p.m.
The South Florida Spill’s organizers, an LLC called Sadiddy Entertainment — comprised of three members of FAU’s chapter of the Omega Psi Phi fraternity — hired private security to monitor the event inside, as it did last year.
Before the event started, seven unmarked Broward Sheriff’s Office SUVs lined the street just outside the venue while private security stood outside of and huddled behind the club. By 11 p.m. the crowd started picking up and the private security started making rounds inside the nightclub.
The partygoers stood in a line to enter Club Cinema and most were patted down before presenting their tickets. The UP saw many girls skip the pat-down.
Once past that, they were carded by security. Those who were of drinking age were given an orange paper wristband.
Before the Spill, the UP attempted to contact Club Cinema personnel through email, private Facebook message and phone calls, but with no success. The club’s listed phone number isn’t an active number.
The club’s attorney, Sanford Topkin, told the Sun Sentinel that Club Cinema’s owner “had not been aware of the reported rape at last year’s party” and that after hearing about it, “he planned to hire extra security for the event.”
The private security stood at key points in the club, including stairways, entrances and a particular hot spot based on last year’s events — the stage.
The music, a compilation of top 40 hip-hop, throwbacks and dancehall, was loud to the point that it carried well past the club and out into the neighboring streets.
The club was dark — too dark to take pictures — and smokey. The lights were turned off, and the smell of marijuana wafted throughout the area, especially the bathrooms.
— Relentless… (@DaGlobe) April 10, 2016
Unlike last year, drinks were a la carte now, with beers going for $6 and vodka shots for $13. But old habits die hard and as the night progressed, a group of men — some who performed at the step show earlier that night — started passing around at least three Ocean Clear Cranberry jugs filled with the purple “Omega Oil.”
The drink pays homage to Omega Psi Phi’s all-you-can-drink Oil Spills, which the UP argued this event was based off of.
The party was slated to go until 4 a.m. but by 1 a.m., hundreds of cars lined the club’s parking lot. According to Sadiddy Entertainment, 1,000 presale tickets were sold.
Last year, Boca Raton Police said 600-800 people attended. Club Cinema’s maximum capacity is 2,500.
One Twitter user said last year’s South Florida Spill was better than this year’s because there were “More careless girls. More liquor and more lap dances.”
Presale tickets to the Spill were around $20, along with the warning that door prices would be at least double.
According to the Broward Sheriff’s Office, no police reports were filed at the South Florida Spill this year.
This is different than last year, when the gang rape was reported to the Boca Raton Police, as well as in 2014 and 2012 when reports were filed. In 2012, a fight broke out on the dance floor and battery on an officer took place while in 2014, police called for reinforcement when they attempted to dismiss the South Florida Spill.
[Nate Nkumbu contributed reporting to this story.]
This story has been updated to include information from the Broward Sheriff’s Office.
Emily Bloch is the editor in chief of the University Press. For information regarding this or other stories, email firstname.lastname@example.org or tweet her @emdrums.
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