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Massachusetts Couple Settle Suit over Planned Capital Video Store

NORTHAMPTON, Massachusetts – Two Summer Street residents have reached a financial settlement with an adult store in their neighborhood, though the terms are confidential.

Michael A. Kirby and Lucille J. Stone sued Capital Video Corporation of Rhode Island and the Northampton Planning Board in Land Court, maintaining that the board violated city ordinances by approving Capital Video’s application to build an adult-theme store at 135 King St. The store will feature pornographic DVDs, videos and magazines, as well as adult toys and sex paraphernalia.

Last December, the Planning Board granted site plan approval for the project, despite the objection by some board members to the proposed window design, which featured scantily clad men and women, some of whom wore handcuffs and brandished whips. At that meeting, Capital Video’s lawyer, Michael Pill, assured the board that his client would tone down the design.

Kirby and Stone could not be immediately reached for comment today, but in a story in the online publication downstreet.net, Kirby, a former city councilor, detailed their struggle against Capital and the city. Although the prospective cost of the legal battle was daunting, Kirby wrote, he and Stone had the time, as retirees, to do their own research.

Kirby wrote that neither side is able to disclose the terms of the agreement, but added that he and Stone are satisfied with it. They each received checks described as “the modest fruit of our labor.” The settlement also ended Northampton’s role in the suit.

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