State Health Inspectors Close Last Churchill Brothel

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State health officials have shut down the only remaining brothel in Churchill County, citing a lack of potable water as well as concerns about the potential for rodents and insects.

Dave Evans, state health inspector for Churchill County, determined last week that the Salt Wells brothel on U.S. Highway 50 east of Fallon had insufficient, safe water, the Lahontan Valley News and Fallon Eagle Standard reported.

A copy of the inspection report obtained by the newspaper also ordered the repair or replacement of a back door to prevent rodent and insects from entering the building. In addition, Evans said a dog must be kept outside.

The Salt Wells Villa is subject to routine food inspections by the Nevada Health Department because it sells alcohol at its bar. State law allows for the emergency closure of a business if there is a lack of suitable water.

The suspension order states that the lack of potable water presents an immediate danger to the public health and safety. The order was signed by Churchill County Sheriff Richard Ingram and Churchill County Commission Chairwoman Gwen Washburn.

The Churchill County Board of Commissioners has scheduled a public hearing on the matter Wednesday at 1:30 p.m.

Telephone calls to the brothel on Tuesday went unanswered.

A woman who answered the telephone at the brothel last week and said her name was April Wells told the newspaper she could not discuss the health department's action. She said brothel owner James Kopulos would be away from the business for a few days.

Kopulos moved to Fallon from Chicago in April to take over management of Salt Wells, according to Ruth Card, the former manager.