About 80 migrants from NYC arrive at Liberty motel where child died of suspected fentanyl overdose

The migrants are believed to be asylum-seekers, but people living in the Sullivan County community say the motel is far from safe. 

Blaise Gomez

May 18, 2023, 2:32 PM

Updated 373 days ago

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About 80 migrants from New York City arrived at the Knights Inn in Liberty on Thursday.
The migrants are believed to be asylum-seekers, but people living in the Sullivan County community say the motel is far from safe. 
“I’m incredibly dismayed to discover folks are going to be staying here," said Sandra Oxford, from Hurleyville. "A place that is perhaps one of the highest drug-driven crime places in my community.” 
 
The motel is the same location where a toddler died from a suspected fentanyl overdose this month and where a narcotics raid was executed in April. 
 
Sullivan County officials say they’re concerned that the migrants’ stay might disrupt otherwise homeless people already living at the motel. 
News 12 talked to one man living at the motel who says he can't save for an apartment because he spends almost his entire paycheck for a $1,900 a month room but that he makes too much for public assistance.
 
“We’re trying to do the right thing – work and be legal and can’t get any help," said Anthony Shermeta. "And then on top of it, you’re going to give people free stuff that we are working our a** off for. It sucks.” 
 
News 12 is told migrants could also be expected at a hotel in Poughkeepsie as early as Sunday. Days ago, 186 migrants were sent to Newburgh in Orange County. The county got a restraining order Monday to prevent the city from sending any more. 
  
Sullivan County has issued a state of emergency to try to block migrants from coming. Sullivan and Dutchess county officials say they are considering their legal options. 
News 12 asked motel management for comment and was asked to leave. 


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