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Motel 6 agrees to armed guards, guest background checks in Sacramento County

Workers sort through debris at a former Arden Arcade Motel 6 - site of the fatal shooting of a Sacramento county deputy in 2014 - which was being leveled to make way for a new shopping complex. Motel 6 has met terms of a deal with local government leaders to increase security measures at local properties.
Workers sort through debris at a former Arden Arcade Motel 6 - site of the fatal shooting of a Sacramento county deputy in 2014 - which was being leveled to make way for a new shopping complex. Motel 6 has met terms of a deal with local government leaders to increase security measures at local properties.

Facing criticism that its Sacramento County properties had become crime magnets, Motel 6 has agreed to use armed security guards, conduct guest background checks and ban nighttime visitors at six local properties, District Attorney Anne Marie Schubert announced Tuesday.

Schubert praised the nation’s largest discount hotel operator for implementing improved security not long after she and city attorneys from Rancho Cordova and Sacramento threatened to take legal action against Motel 6. She said additional security measures have led to a dramatic reduction in calls for service from law enforcement.

Under the agreement, Motel 6 employees will ask prospective guests for identification and run their information through a national database. The hotels will not provide rooms to people who have been banned in the past.

Visitors will not be allowed in rooms between 8 p.m. and 8 a.m. Security guards approved by local law enforcement will work around the clock, including armed guards in the evening, according to the agreement.

The agreement also calls for Motel 6 to donate $750,000 to the District Attorney’s Office for disbursement to local nonprofits that work to reduce crime, Schubert said.

Motel 6 CEO Jim Amorosia visited Sacramento last year to meet with local officials about the proposed agreement, reflecting the company’s interest in addressing crime problems, Schubert said.

In a 30-month period ending in June, law enforcement agencies responded to more than 5,300 calls for service at Motel 6 properties in the county, or an average of almost 10 calls for each of its 550 rooms. Three Motel 6 properties are in Sacramento, one is in Rancho Cordova and two are in the unincorporated county.

In October 2014, Sacramento County Deputy Danny Oliver, who focused on problem properties, was shot and killed at a Motel 6 in Arden Arcade. Luis Monroy Bracamontes has been charged with killing Oliver in a crime spree that started at the motel and later included the killing of Placer County Deputy Michael Davis Jr.

The motel was razed in January to make way for expanded retail and a new movie theater complex.

“They had become a magnet for criminal behavior,” Schubert said, referring to all of the company’s properties in Sacramento County.

Stan Van Vleck, a Sacramento attorney who has represented Motel 6 in the negotiations, did not immediately return a call seeking comment.

Schubert said the number of local governments joining together to ask Motel 6 for changes is unprecedented.

She said Motel 6 has already implemented many security procedures. “The word has gotten out on the street that Motel 6 doesn’t tolerate criminal behavior,” she said.

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