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Parents plan to picket housing of sex offenders in Utica motel
UTICA, N.Y. (WKTV) - Some parents want to make sure the Davis Motel on Herkimer Road in north Utica does not join those who temporarily house paroled sex offenders once the hotel portion of the business re-opens.
Unhappy after a recent meeting with city councilmembers, some parents are planning a picket this weekend.
The Davis Motel is where then-owner Linda Turner was sexually assaulted and murdered by serial rapist Robert Blainey in November 2011.
For those who knew Turner, even the prospect of the hotel housing convicted sex offenders is highly offensive.
The hotel's new owner is trying to re-zone it back to commercial to allow the reopening of the motel.
A hearing for that re-zoning is set for May 14, but before that, Utica City Councilman Jim Zecca wants to force the new owner, Oneida Housing, Inc, to refuse to accept vouchers from Oneida County for paroled, homeless sex offenders. and he wants it in writing.
Parents at least want other unsuspecting parents warned when sex offenders are put up in any hotel.
Rebecca Dingman is among those who will be picketing near the north Utica entrance of the New York State Thruway on Sunday.
"The city of Utica promotes," she said. "This is the gateway into the Adirondacks and tourism and you have folks coming off the thruway and they're staying there, unsuspected. There should be disclosure."
That picket is Sunday April 28 at Noon, with picketers meeting at the north Utica Thruway Entrance.
Several attempts to reach the new owner of the Davis Motel have been were unsuccessful.