Christmas Motel Stabbing Comes As City Tries to Shut 'Deluxe Inn' Down

By  | 

The Christmas morning stabbing of a 54-year-old man at the Deluxe Inn comes after an August murder and a dozen recent drug calls.

"This is simply the latest in a long line of bad events," City Attorney Brigham Smith said. "And it may well be the last straw."

Smith says police have responded to the motel near downtown Lansing 1600 times since 2001.

He sent a letter to the motel's owner in late November saying that if the problems continue, he'd ask the Lansing City Council to board up the Deluxe Inn under the city's padlock ordinance.

The problems did continue and the city attorney is already drafting what he calls a "second strike" letter.

"We don't give them a third strike. In Lansing, we think two strikes is enough," Smith said.

So the attorney says the news of the stabbing, while disappointing, won't change his course of action.

An attorney representing the Deluxe Inn's owner says at least some of those involved in the stabbing incident were placed at the motel by the Red Cross. He says the inexpensive motel is a needed option in the city for those of modest means.

And attorney Robert McCarthy says the owner has taken steps to make the Deluxe Inn safer, including a night guard and a better surveillance system.

McCarthy says he's 'very optimistic' that the motel will be able to stay open. The city attorney and the owner will meet next week to see if a compromise can be reached.

"Otherwise, we're proceeding with the board-up," Smith said.

The city could close the motel for up to a year.