On Saturday night police raided Club 77 in Darlinghurst. The next day, owner Matt Bicket posted about the raid on Facebook. “15 police and a sniffer dog arrived at club 77 last night, storming the venue, 0 arrests were made, 0 drugs were found.”
Bicket goes on to explain that the night’s headline DJ, who had flow up for the gig from Melbourne, was searched and barred from the club and so couldn’t play his set.
We got in touch with DJ Handsdown (who asked for his real name not to be used), who told Broadsheet that “I simply leant across a guy in the bathroom getting searched as I knew his partner worked at the venue, with the intention of asking if he’d like me to let her know what was happening. I was grabbed by the neck and thrown around by an officer. I was then searched out the front after a police dog showed interest in me, without them finding anything, obviously. [I was] then told by the same officer [from inside] that I wouldn’t be entering the building ‘because of my attitude and [because] I was mouthing off’. I was in Sydney for literally a few hours and definitely wasn’t abusive or uncooperative.” He also said nothing like this has happened to him before, in Sydney or elsewhere.
In his Facebook post, Bicket says he tried to approach the police and was met with “no interest, interaction … and kept in the dark.” He goes on to say “one kid was apparently tasered in the back alley for not complying and multiple were searched in inappropriate places in front of people … police then visited our humble venue again, sitting at the front door intimidating and acting as RSA marshals telling us who were [sic] intoxicated and dragging people out of the club yet again.” Broadsheet contacted Bicket for comment, but had not received a response at time of publication.
A spokesperson for the NSW Police Media Unit told Broadsheet: “Police conducted a proactive operation, utilising a police drug detection dog, in the Kings Cross Local Area Command, which lead to 13 drug detections; nine of these were issued court attendance notices for drug possession and three [were] issued a cannabis caution. Information circulating regarding use of taser is incorrect.”
Information was not provided as to which other venues police visited over the weekend, or where the arrests were made. Currently, Bicket’s post has almost 3,000 likes and more than 350 shares.