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Operation ‘Bed Bug’ Shuts Down Seven Memphis Motels

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(Memphis) Seven Memphis motels are closed for promoting prostitution by renting rooms by the hour.

Since Wednesday, the Memphis Police Organized Crime Unit has been shutting down hotels.

The MPD OCU investigation identified the following motels:

  • Memphis Inn, 4879 American Way; Owner: DEV Enterprises, Tarun Patel
  • Southeast Motel 3466 Lamar Avenue; Owner: Sima and Amar Inc., Arvind and Urmila Bahkta
  • Bellevue Inn 1250 South Bellevue; Owner: Parvien Patel
  • Rainbow Inn 640 Breedlove; Owner: Parvien and Pramudhbhai Patel
  • Airways Inn Motel 2375 Airways; Owner: Manher Patel
  • Deluxe Inn Motel 3733 Jackson; Owner: Swaminarayan Inc., Dilip Patel
  • Summer Motel 3025 Summer; Owner: Jayex, Inc., Manendraku Bhakta, Hansaben Bhakta

Police Director Toney Armstrong says undercover officers recorded 67 times they went into the motels and rented rooms by the hour, which is against the law.

Officers say they sometimes paid as little as $20 for a room.

The director talked about all the other problems that were also associated with these motels, "From March 2012 to May of 2013 uniform patrol officers have responded to the above mentioned hotels a total of 350 times for crimes ranging from forcible rape, aggravated assault, robbery, theft, narcotic violations, prostitution and criminal trespassing."

Some of these motels have been deemed a public nuisance before.

News Channel 3 asked District Attorney Amy Weirich about that.

She said the various owners are going to reopen they're going to have to submit a plan to assure not only her but the community they were not going to be a breeding ground for crime.

The owners will be in Environmental Court Tuesday to answer to these allegations.