Is downtown nightlife still safe?
On Tuesday morning, a man and a woman were shot downtown, near The Block, on the 400 block of Water Street. The double shooting was the third violent incident in the area since Saturday.
This morning, police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi, dismissed safety concerns about the area.
"This is an isolated, targeted incident," he said. "The suspect and [male] victim had some issue with each other, and we're trying to find out what that is."
But as Crime Beat has reported, the double shooting comes after a police officer was wounded Saturday during an altercation with an armed man on North Calvert and East Baltimore streets. And, another man was stabbed later that day at Light and Lombard streets.
The double shooting also happened near Market Place, where a 22-year-old man was stabbed several times in September.
Except for the stabbing at Light and Lombard streets, all these incidents happened after or around the time that bars in the area and Inner Harbor closed.
In this morning's story, J. Kirby Fowler Jr., president of the Downtown Partnership, said the violence was relegated to the area near and around The Block, the hub of strip clubs. And it fell to business owners in the area to pay for more late-night police.
"Last year, the partnership persuaded four clubs to pay for overtime police coverage, and, as a result, the amount of violent crime on The Block has fallen," he said. "More clubs must do the same."So, who's right? Police are suggesting security downtown has improved, and that this most recent shooting was an isolated incident. But do you feel more safe there? Or should businesses foot the bill for more police coverage?