Armed assaults on the rise in the Downtown West Neighborhood - KMOV.com

Armed assaults on the rise in the Downtown West Neighborhood

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According to the SLMPD report, there were 12 aggravated assaults involving guns by July of 2016. Since July of 2017, there have already been 32 incidents reported, that is a 166% spike in armed assaults for this neighborhood. (KMOV) According to the SLMPD report, there were 12 aggravated assaults involving guns by July of 2016. Since July of 2017, there have already been 32 incidents reported, that is a 166% spike in armed assaults for this neighborhood. (KMOV)
ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KMOV.com) -

New crime reports for July released by St. Louis Metropolitan Police show that aggravated assault has nearly tripled in the Downtown West Neighborhood since last year. 

According to the SLMPD report, there were 12 aggravated assaults involving guns by July of 2016. Since July of 2017, there have already been 32 incidents reported, that is a 166% spike in armed assaults for this neighborhood.

"I'm not surprised at all. I think anyone who moves in this neighborhood knows what's going on. It's disheartening, but it is what it is," said Patrick O'Neill, who lives in the Downtown West Neighborhood. 

The Downtown West neighborhood has the northern border of Martin Luther King Dr., the southern border of Chouteau Ave., the eastern border of Tucker Blvd. and the western border of Jefferson Ave. 

Busch Stadium and the Gateway Arch, where there is more tourist traffic, are not part of this neighborhood seeing the growing crime. Instead Downtown West is where more people live and work. Armani Johnson works at a restaurant on Washington Ave.,

"The downtown area is really dangerous," said Johnson.

He uses routine strategies leaving work to keep himself safe. "I let my employees know when I'm going and I let them know when I make it home, and I leave with my roommate and she works with me so we just kind of monitor each other...stay in a pack," said Johnson. 

"I've seen one or two muggings before while I've just been driving around," said Ari Zakroff, who lives in Downtown West. 

Although people who live and work in the area know crime is growing in Downtown West, they say they do not have plans to let the armed assaults push them out. 

"The people make me want to stay in, honestly," said O'Neill.

"I have never felt unsafe. I love it down here, the vibe is great and honestly I feel like every day that goes by gets safer and safer," said Colleen Duhart, who works in Downtown West. 

Many who frequent the area argue that this kind of crime is no different than any big city. "I think any major city is going to have a lot of the same problems we have. I lived in Detroit and Atlanta, it's no different," said O'Neill.

News 4 reached out to Alderwoman Christine Ingrassia, who over the sees the ward which Downtown West is in. News 4 has not heard back from her or her office. 

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