An older man pushed a shopping cart filled to the brim with his belongings as he walked away from Villa Town Motel in Lubbock.
After receiving a notice from the motel’s management late Monday afternoon that residents had to leave immediately, some who were staying there had nowhere else to go and headed to the park across the street where they planned to stay the night until they can find a cheap place to live or a spot at a local shelter. Some people planned on sleeping in their vehicles.
Other residents, like Damion Diaz, were defiant, saying they had no plans to leave.
As Diaz and his dog walked back into the building after Lubbock County Sheriff’s deputies left the area around 8 p.m., his mother Rita Narbaez stood outside, wondering if she could find another affordable apartment for her son that would allow him to have a pitbull.
“I didn’t want him to live here, but we had no choice,” Narbaez said. “There’s bad people and good people here, but the fact of the matter is, where else are you going to go?”
In a letter to its residents, the motel’s management states they were ordered by a Lubbock County Court to shut down.
“I have been informed that all our guests and staff will have to immediately begin vacating the premises,” the letter states. “At this time, I have no information regarding refunds.”
An employee at motel declined to comment, saying he was hit with the notice late in the day and hadn’t had a chance to speak with a lawyer.
Receiving no other information from the owner, Narbaez and other residents gathered outside motel, where they wondered what would happen to some of the residents who don’t have family they can stay with.
Narbaez said she just paid about $640 for her son to live at the motel for a month, in addition to a deposit for the dog.