America's Best Value Inn & Suites, at 3200 Kemmons Dr. in Bashford Manor
America’s Best Value Inn & Suites, at 3200 Kemmons Dr. in Bashford Manor

The spokesman for the Metro Department of Codes and Regulations says America’s Best Value Inn & Suites will not be cited for a violation of Louisville’s revised public nuisance ordinance. While police recently alerted the department that the number of arrests at the hotel had exceeded the threshold of the new rules, there were not enough applicable crimes under the ordinance for Codes and Regulations to proceed.

Under Louisville’s public nuisance ordinance that was amended last year, a hotel can be cited if there have been at least five arrests on its premises for certain felonies per 100 units, within a 60-day window. The Louisville Metro Police Department is to report these stats to Codes and Regulations, which would cite the hotel and could suspend its operating permit unless the hotel is able to abate the nuisance or win an appeal.

In January, Major LaVita Chavous of LMPD’s Sixth Division told Insider Louisville that America’s Best — located in the Bashford Manor neighborhood — recently had exceeded the threshold of arrests under the ordinance, and police had forwarded that information to Codes and Regulations. However, Harold Adams, spokesman for Codes and Regulations, says the hotel will not be cited, as some of these arrests did not fall under the scope of the ordinance.

“To date, no hotel has violated the revised nuisance ordinance,” wrote Adams in an email. “Some of the arrests sent to us for America’s Best were not for offenses covered by the ordinance and thus did not count toward triggering its enforcement. Codes & Regulations, LMPD and the County Attorney’s Office recently conferred on ways to ensure the most accurate and timely data. We will continue to monitor arrests and will enforce the ordinance as written.”

The public nuisance ordinance states that the applicable crimes are murder, assault, prostitution, gambling, and the trafficking or possession of controlled substances or narcotics. Adams said that some of the arrests were non-qualifying, including warrants for failure to appear in court.

Adams has not yet provided LMPD’s original report sent to Codes and Regulations, nor the time frame of the arrests at America’s Best. Of the 19 arrests at the hotel’s address from the beginning of November to the end of January, most were for possession or trafficking of narcotics, though there were also two arrests for 1st degree robbery and one for 1st degree assault. The LMPD’s crime tracking website shows there have been only two arrests at the hotel since the beginning of February, and both were for theft.

Though crime at the nearby Economy Inn on Bardstown Road was the impetus behind the revision of the city’s public nuisance ordinance, the troubled motel has not yet been cited. Since the beginning of 2016, there have been 17 arrests on the block of the motel, including 1st degree robbery, 1st degree assault and 1st degree rape. Last week, a prostitution sting operation by the LMPD at the Economy Inn netted two arrests.

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Joe Sonka
Joe Sonka is a staff writer at Insider Louisville focusing on government, politics, education and public safety. He is a former news editor and staff writer at LEO Weekly and has also freelanced for The Nation and ThinkProgress. He has won first place awards from the Louisville Metro chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists in the categories of Health Reporting, Enterprise Reporting, Government/Politics, Minority/Women’s Affairs Reporting, Continuing Coverage and Best Blog. Email him at [email protected]