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Published: Friday, 6/11/2004

City seeks closure of motel in S. Toledo

The city of Toledo asked Toledo Municipal Court to declare a south-end motel a public nuisance and order it closed for a year.

The lawsuit was filed against Great Lakes Motor Inns Inc., which is doing business as the Budget Inn, and Matiur Rahman, the motel's owner.

City officials said they want the Reynolds Road motel closed after police have responded to 606 calls for 911 service there and filed 257 reports between Jan. 9, 2001, and June 5.

On Sunday, Gregory Jenkins, 44, of Oak Harbor, Ohio was stabbed in a second-floor hallway of the motel and later died.

The suit claims crimes at the motel have included drug use, burglary, theft, domestic violence, assault, sexual assault, robbery, unruly juveniles, child endangering, criminal damage, trespassing, and disorderly conduct.

Thirty-six convictions have been handed down in cases of criminal activity at the motel, according to the suit.

It also states that in July, the city sent written notice to the defendants advising them the property was becoming a public nuisance, but the owners took no action to abate the nuisance conditions or criminal activity, the suit claims.

The Toledo-Lucas County health department inspected the motel Tuesday and found it to be in an unsanitary condition, according to the suit.

Mr. Rahman said his motel should not be shut down. He said it employs good people and provides shelter for those in need.

"They won't shut down crime, but shut down the work of hardworking people and make us unemployed," he said.

He said the city should have waited to file the suit until after an arrest was made in the murder. He said he wished officials would have given him a chance to deal with the situation before filing the suit.

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