“South Park” creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone have dropped their objection to the release of building plans at Casa Bonita, the famous Lakewood restaurant they own.
In a motion filed just before Labor Day weekend, their company The Beautiful Opco asked Jefferson County District Court Judge Randall Arp to let them end their lawsuit against the City of Lakewood. Arp approved that motion Tuesday afternoon.
The restaurant’s attorneys gave no reason for closing the case. In a statement sent by a Casa Bonita spokeswoman, attorney Afshin Beyzaee said, “We do not comment on our litigation strategy.” A Lakewood spokeswoman also declined to comment.
In their Aug. 15 lawsuit and during an emergency hearing the next day, Casa Bonita’s lawyers argued the release of its building plans to television stations under the Colorado Open Records Act could hypothetically help a mass shooter kill scores of people there.
“Releasing this information would cause injury to the public interest because the public has an interest in not being subjected to mass shootings and especially not subjected to mass shootings where the perpetrator had access to security information,” Jessica Smith, an attorney with Holland & Hart representing Casa Bonita, told Arp on Aug 16.
The City of Lakewood has been neutral on the matter. It believed the records were public under CORA and that it therefore must turn them over to anyone who requested them. But Assistant City Attorney Gus Schenck said at the hearing that he welcomed a contrary ruling.
That same day, Arp issued a 21-day restraining order that prohibited Lakewood from turning over 121 pages of records while the two sides worked together to redact security details.
“We live in a different world than we did perhaps 20 or 30 years ago, with mass shootings occurring in concert venues and grocery stores and schools and bars and nightclubs and other public locations that are not necessarily infrastructure but certainly are targets,” he ruled.
That 21-day restraining order expired Tuesday.
Spokespeople for Casa Bonita and Lakewood declined to say whether an agreement has been reached on redactions. Last Wednesday, Schenck asked Arp for more time and told the judge that the two sides remained in a stalemate.
“The parties have attempted to come to an agreement on redactions,” Schenck wrote then, “but each party’s position remains the same as it was at the hearing on Aug. 16.”
Casa Bonita hasn’t been open since March 2020, when pandemic restrictions closed restaurants to dine-in customers for weeks. The restaurant’s previous owner filed for bankruptcy in 2021. Parker and Stone, who have featured Casa Bonita in their hit animated show, purchased the restaurant last year and plan to reopen it.