“Enough is enough.”
That’s the message Metro Police Chief Steve Anderson said the department sent this morning when officers stormed The Harding Inn at 350 Harding Place in south Nashville.
Officers shut down and padlocked the motel, formerly known as the Knight’s Inn. They said it had become “public nuisance” and a hangout for prostitutes and drug dealers. Metro police have been called to the site 276 times from May 2009 to May 2010. That’s more than three times as many than to a nearby Harding Place motel.
The department has requested that the owners and managers of the motel take action to deter criminal conduct, but police said those requests have fallen on deaf ears.
Criminal Court Judge Steve Dozier declared the business a public nuisance in a temporary injunction and padlocking order.
The order provides that the motel’s rented rooms are to be padlocked, and prohibits the owners of the motel, John J. Yoon and Susie M. Yoon of Manchester, Tenn., and its managers, Keith Lewis, Adrian Slaton and Chris Howard, from entering onto the property until a hearing is held Friday morning.
District Attorney Torry Johnson said a padlocking order is rare, noting that nuisance proceedings have been used against only five motels in Nashville since 1997.
“Business owners and their customers, including those who workout at the nearby YMCA, are understandably fed up, and it’s time to send the message that enough is enough,” Anderson said. “If hundreds of police responses, arrests, and warnings to the ownership won’t work, I believe today’s extreme action will.”