Loves Park Motels Under the Microscope Following Rise in Citizen Complaints

- LOVES PARK -- The Park Motel in Loves Park is no stranger to police activity. In the past twelve months, Loves Park Police have responded to over 170 calls at the motel.

Nearby residents say they too happy with the motel's proximity neighborhood. 

"I would say tear the place down because that seems that's going to be the only way that [crime is] going to go away," said Sabrina Mills, Loves Park resident. 

There have been two arrests at the motel recently, including the arrest of 53-year-old Renaldo Stone in July, who was charged with criminal sexual assault and drug possession after being found at the motel in the company of a 16-year-old minor.

The manager, Carmen Arteaga, said she can't know the background of every guest that stays there.  "We can't run the record for every person that comes to this place."  

The Park Motel isn't the only place on police's radar all the hotels and motels in the area are under watch as investigators try to link crime with persons staying at local motels.  "We're willing to work with the police," said Arteaga. The reputation of this place is the main thing they say police is working very close around here and also the neighbors," said Arteaga.

The Park Motel has been under new ownership for about a year now and Arteaga said things are changing for the better.  "Since we got the place the arrests were down probably 90 percent," said Arteaga. 

Still, residents say they don't feel very safe with it so close to their home. 

"It would make me feel a lot safer if there wasn't a lot of problems right there," said Mills.

Police say not all of the calls they receive related to the Park Motel are not crime related, but Loves Park Deputy Chief Charles Lynde says many of them are.  Lynde says once the police have collected all of their data, a patrol strategy will be developed.

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