East Washington Avenue hotels, motels form crime-fighting alliance

East Washington Avenue hotels, motels form crime-fighting alliance

Aiming to decrease the number of crimes on their property, 24 hotels and motels on East Washington Avenue have partnered with police to share information about individuals they will not rent to, and assist in the arrest and prosecution of violators.

The businesses hope to decrease the amount of drug use, human trafficking and prostitution incidents in their rooms and parking lots.

“What we recognize is that a problem for one hotel is very likely a problem for all hotels,” Madison police officer David Dexheimer said. “Our hope is that it develops into something that’s self-sustaining between the hotels and the motels.”

While antagonizers may currently be denied rooms at one place, they can take their business to another nearby hotel or motel.

By sharing troublemakers’ information through an email exchange, Comfort Inn front desk supervisor Sandra Haire hopes to see less crime in general.

“The importance is our staff and guests. They’re the most important people. And we’re doing everything we can to keep them safe,” Haire said. “So we just want to make sure there are no problems.”

Madison police compare the alliance to a pilot program. Dexheimer said they hope if they see success along East Washington Avenue, police can use it as a model for other hotels and motels throughout the city.