Author Archive for Dave McKenna

Grime Scenes: 133 C Street SE — What the Hell’s Going Down at Fellowship House?

This Capitol Hill residence, generally called Fellowship House, produces more sleaze per square foot than any dwelling this town has ever known.
Its tenants  show up on the scandal sheets as sure as USC quarterbacks show up in the NFL.
For more than half a century, the house has been owned and operated by The Family, a [...]

Grime Scenes: 2390 Champlain St NW, A Madam’s (News) Organ

The Deborah Jeane Palfrey story had boffo foreplay and a really shitty climax.
And it started right here at City Paper. That's where Palfrey, based in California, bought classified advertisements seeking local college-age whores to service her high-powered johns in the DC market.
Well, that was basically how legal authorities played the tale when they busted Palfrey [...]

Grime Scenes: 517 6th Street SE, ‘Monkey Business’ for Land Lubbers

Right here, Gary Hart's presidential campaign ended with a bang.
Well, that was the assumption of what went on behind these walls in the spring of 1987, just weeks after Hart had officially announced he was running for the top job.
Hart's reputation for womanizing preceded his run. So reporters from the Miami Herald who'd staked out [...]

Grime Scenes: 1711 Rhode Island Ave NW

Village People songs, like cliches, are there for a reason.
Turns out YMCAs were tagged as a cruiser's paradise long before the costumed boy band lampooned the health clubs' rep in the 1978 hit single.
The dirty secret was out at least as early as October 1964, when Walter Jenkins, a 46-year-old married advisor to and longtime [...]

Grime Scenes: 3251 Prospect Street NW, Where the ‘Boy on the Hood’ Incident Was Birthed

This city has never had a party gal like Marlene Cooke, aka Marlene Ramallo Chalmers Cooke Something Something etc.
In the fall of 1993, the former First Lady of Football was the talk of the town, even moreso than her sugar-daddy husband's Washington Redskins.
After a night of wine drinking at Cafe Milano, while 80-something hubby Jack [...]

Grime Scenes: Guys You Probably Shouldn’t Have Met in a Dark Alley

Perhaps the best hockey team this town ever saw blew up because of what went down in this Georgetown alley.
The 1989-1990 Washington Capitals roster was a great mix of past, current and future stars. The squad made it all the way to the conference finals, before losing to Boston. That was by far the best [...]