Rockford Motel Shut Down

By: Max Seigle
By: Max Seigle

Christina Wolfe packs up her things at the Sunset Motel in Rockford. She was taken by suprise around noon on Friday...coming back from some errands...and finding the motel being shut down by police. "Police were saying get your stuff out. We don't care how you get it out, just go," Wolfe said. But finding where to go isn't so easy for Wolfe, who is homeless. "Now we got to look all over again and hopefully find another place that's as cheap enough," Wolfe said. She and the other patrons are innocent victims in this case. The city says those working behind this office door are to blame for the closure...because the owners violated an agreement to stop drug activity at the motel. It was a pact signed after a previous closure in april of 2006. A statement from the city attorney says "The owner's were well aware that if drug activity continued, we would have the ability to seize the property. This should not come as a suprise to anyone." So far, there's been one arrest in this case....34-year-old Lisa Twitty of Rockford. Police tell us she was a motel employee....now in jail on 10 thousand dollar bond. Back at the motel, Wolfe leaves behind a place to sleep...but also a place she enjoyed staying. "The people I think living here were pretty decent, just getting by being homeless." But now they'll have to get by somewhere else. The city would not comment on the nature or the extent of the drug activity taking place at the motel. And it remains closed indefinitely. The city has worked to shut down places like the Sunset Motel in its effort to create safe neighborhoods in Rockford. This recent case involved more than half dozen agencies working together.


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