City of Aurora steps in after motel raises rent and tries to evict long-term residents

Officials fear residents could become homeless
Posted at 10:33 PM, Jun 07, 2017
and last updated 2017-06-08 01:08:33-04

AURORA, Colo. -- Residents at an Aurora motel were told to pay up or get out when new owners took over.

The City of Aurora stepped in when officials learned of active evictions at the King's Inn Motel on Colfax Avenue. They feared many families would be forced to sleep on the streets without some kind of intervention.

"Ownership took over Friday, come Saturday morning all hell breaks loose," said Jodi Mitchell, a long-term resident at the motel.

On Wednesday, the saga continued when Denver7 tried to get answers. The city's Homeless Program Director, Shelley McKittrick, said the owner had agreed to back off immediate eviction and give residents 30 days before raising their rent.

"We spoke with the owners, we explained to them that these folks have been here a really long time and that it was our thought that they needed to follow different procedures and they were actually OK to work with and they backed off of the immediate evictions," said McKittrick.

Mitchell said in some cases, rent went up from $225 per week to $455. She said many families live in the motel because they are not able to afford an apartment or meet the rental requirements.

Denver7's Liz Gelardi talked with a man who identified himself as a manager at the motel. She asked him if they were going to give residents more time and he replied, "yeah." About 15 minutes after the TV crew left, several residents received an eviction notice telling them to vacate their rooms in three days.

Three residents showed Denver7 the notices and expressed their frustrations. Violanda Scorsonelli said, "Yesterday the city came and told us, 'ladies don’t worry about your kids, they’re going to be ok for at least 30 days.'"

She doesn't know where she is going to go if she is forced to leave her home. Denver7 reached out to the City of Aurora to get a response to the recent eviction notices. We have yet to receive a response.