A new entry into Towson's crowded bail bonds market has residents talking.
Double D Bail Bonds is set to open in several weeks at 11 E. Chesapeake Ave., but the office's new sign, installed Saturday, has drawn some complaints from neighbors and area residents.
The logo depicts a busty woman in handcuffs and jail stripes with generous cleavage and the eponymous D's on her chest.
Danny, a man at the location who declined to give his last name but said he was a friend assisting owner Denny Danielczyk, said the community ought not judge the store by its cover.
But the sign left Nancy Hafford, executive director of the Towson Chamber of Commerce, "disturbed."
"I would hope that they would reconsider the sign that they have made up," Hafford said, expressing concern that the sign now has a prominent position across from the Towson library.
"They have children's book readings for nursery school kids across the street," she said.
Hafford said she would like to meet with Danielczyk about the sign, adding that she has no problems with the office's name.
The two D's are from Danny's and Danielczyk's first names, Danny said. A LinkedIn profile identifies Danielczyk as owner of Towson-based Metropolis Funding. He owned the now-defunct Towson pizzeria Stolano's, and his name is shown in liquor license proceedings as the owner of the nearby bar Lil' Dicky's. Efforts to reach Danielczyk through a number listed on his business card were unsuccessful.
Danny said Double D solicited the logo online and "that was one that we thought that was very marketable," he said.
On Oct. 21, Baltimore County approved the sign that included the logo. According to zoning officials, the county can't police sign content short of actual nudity or obscenity.
"I don't know what government can do to regulate that type of image," County Councilman David Marks said. "Hopefully the Towson Chamber of Commerce and other individuals might be able to persuade them to remove it."
Julie Saxenmeyer, a Cockeysville resident who works in Towson, noticed the sign soon after it was erected over the weekend. She said she's not easily offended but believes the sign is inappropriate for downtown Towson and that street, which is home to several other bail bondsmen near the Towson District Court.
"I think all their signs are pretty gawdy, but they don't objectify women," she said. "I just don't think it's the way to advance a business in this neighborhood."
Danny denied that any sexism was intended with the logo, and said Double D plans to "revolutionize" the bail bond industry.
"We believe that 99 of 100 people that are bailed out of jail have some type of chemical dependency," he said. "We believe the system does not deal with that. Instead they like to incarcerate and we just don't believe in that philosophy. We believe in rehabilitation."
Danny said his firm has partnerships with local mental health providers and lawyers. The Towson location would be the first, with four others planned in Essex, Baltimore City and Harford County.
He said passers-by have generally had no problem with his logo, with a few exceptions.
"I guess there are some feminists here," he said. "I guess that's why it's called America. We all have to get along with different aspects of life and it's not meant to be taken in an offensive way."