The general manager and employee of a Fort Smith hotel were arrested Tuesday (Jan. 15) for promoting prostitution in the business, according to police.
A six-month investigation revealed general manager John Lee Rohlin, 42, and his employee Jonathan Richard Bean, 28, regularly rented rooms at the Season’s Inn on south Waldron to individuals by the hour to accommodate men and women engaging in sex for money, a police report states.
“I haven’t seen like that kind of stuff,” said Micaeleao Loredo, a hotel visitor.
The arrests stunned guests Thursday afternoon. “It will be scary because it’s something illegal you know,” said Monsour Alhussain, a hotel guest.
“A lot of our undercover officers were able to walk into this hotel, purchase a room for between an hour, two hours, or three hours upon their choice,” said Sgt. Daniel Grubbs.
5NEWS spoke with an employee at the hotel. The employee said he did not want to comment about the arrests.
“This is a serious crime because it’s such a spider web into other facets, you know robberies stem from this, assaults, rapes,” said Sgt. Grubbs.
Both men were booked into the Sebastian County Detention Center and released on $1,500 bonds.
Police say the activity not only violates state statutes regarding prostitution but violates the city’s sexually oriented business ordinances.