Officers Arrest Owner Of Ponderosa Inn

The owner of a Redding motel has been arrested for sexual assault and other crimes allegedly committed against a woman who went to police a couple of weeks ago. The unidentified woman filed the report on May 29th against 39-year-old Gursahib Sekhon, who goes by the name “Sam”. He’s the owner of the Ponderosa Inn in Downtown Redding. He’s accused of threatening the woman with a gun during the episode, which she said happened earlier in May. The Ponderosa Inn has been a target of authorities for a long time. Following the forced closure of the Hilltop Lodge, the Americana Inn and the Redding Inn, the Ponderosa was named as the next problem hotel on the chopping block. The D.A.’s Office and police met with Sekhon in 2016 to show him the numbers and try and convince him that his motel had become a source of blight and nuisance downtown. Recommendations were made and Sekhon was warned of the consequences. Problems apparently continued unabated, such as drug dealing, drug overdoses including one death, assaults and batteries, domestic violence, vandalism, prostitution, theft, and a lot of stolen property and fugitives found on site. Witnesses and former employees told police that the person frequently at the center of the criminal vortex was the owner, Gursahib Sekhon. There were many complaints that Sekhon and his staff frequently went into guests’ rooms to steal money, drugs and property. He allegedly allowed drug dealing and took a cut of the profits, and traded rooms for drugs and acts of prostitution. Police say that word got around and the Ponderosa became a magnet for criminal activity. Sekhon was arrested in April of last year for failing to deal with the issues. The Neighborhood Policing Unit served search and arrest warrants Wednesday at the Ponderosa and Sekhon was booked into jail for assault with a deadly weapon, false imprisonment, sexual battery, assault with intent to commit rape, and attempted rape. He’s since been released.

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