SEATTLE — A week after a downtown Seattle shooting left one woman dead and seven others injured, business owners in the area, along with angry taxpayers, showed up to a city public safety committee meeting to voice their concerns.
Seattle City Councilmember Lisa Herbold and Seattle Police Chief Carmen Best were both interrupted by angry shouts from the crowd while speaking Tuesday.
Patrick Foley, one of the partners behind The State Hotel that recently underwent a multi-million dollar renovation, was among the speakers at city hall.
“We’ve been asking for a while for just very simple things – like police on the beat, walking the streets,” said Foley in an interview with KIRO 7 Wednesday.
Foley said the crime downtown has taken its toll on business.
“Our sales are down, we are not getting as many customers coming into the restaurant in the evenings,” said Foley. “They just simply don’t want to deal with what goes on down there.”
At the same time, Foley, who said he blames chronic crime on city leaders not police, told KIRO 7 security costs have spiked.
“Our security costs have increased over $200,000 a year,” said Foley. “What are we paying for in our taxes if we can’t have police present?" Other downtown business owners shared the same concerns.
“People do not feel safe,” said Jim Rowe, who owns three downtown businesses. “It’s reflected in our business, our guest counts, our revenues.”
The extra focus by police around 3rd Avenue and Pine, following last week’s deadly shooting, is something Foley said he’s seen before – that did not last.
“There was an improvement when the police were there,” said Foley. “It was noticeable.”
Police said they have arrested one of the three gunmen who was also injured in the shooting. Prosecutors charged Jamel Jackson with unlawful possession of a gun but said it does not appear he was the aggressor.
A week after the downtown shooting, and detectives are still searching for the two other shooters, Marquise Tolbert and William Tolliver, who are both considered armed and dangerous.
Contact Seattle police with information on their whereabouts.
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