University City community helps businesses clean up after Delmar - KMOV.com

University City community helps businesses clean up after Delmar Loop vandalism

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St. Louis Metropolitan Police said that late Saturday night 23 business along Delmar Boulevard were vandalized. (KMOV) St. Louis Metropolitan Police said that late Saturday night 23 business along Delmar Boulevard were vandalized. (KMOV)
UNIVERSITY CITY, Mo. (KMOV.com) -

St. Louis Metropolitan Police said that late Saturday night 23 business along Delmar Boulevard were vandalized.

In the beginning of the evening, the protests started off peaceful. Police said about 450 people were marching along the Delmar Loop and then dispersed around 9:15 p.m. Police said about 75 people stuck around and after 10 p.m. became aggressive by breaking business windows, including three windows at Ranoush Mediterranean Restaurant. 

Owner of Ranoush, Aboud Alhamaid, said agitators used a hammer to shatter at least one of the windows.

"This is the new kitchen wall I did," said Alhamaid.

Right after the agitators were broken up by police, in the early morning hours, store owners began cleaning up.

"We are small businesses, what is the advantage for breaking this window? [Monday] we are not going to open and I'm going to have a lot of people who are not going to be working," said Alhamaid.

As the sun started rising on Sunday, it was a simple decision for people to help continue the cleanup process. However, those that came out where not store owners, they just lived nearby and wanted to volunteer.

"This is my community, that's it," said a community member who chose to remain anonymous, "Trying to clean it up and get things back to the way they should be."

 Another volunteer, named Rita, who lives in the Delmar Loop area came by in the morning to clean up and brought her own broom and garbage bags.

"I had seen how bad they had destroyed by the neighborhood of 40 something years and I was just motivated to get up and do something," said Rita.

When News 4 asked her how long she planned to stay out cleaning, she said, "I'm going to be out here as long as it takes, as long as it takes to get my neighborhood back together."

As remnants from Saturday night's vandalism remain on the sidewalks, Delmar Loop resident, Karen Hudson, wonder why business owners ended up as targets.

"I think it's ridiculous," said Hudson, "It shouldn't be happening to them. They had nothing to do with the decision. I don't know what their rational. is...it's not rational to take it out on them."

In addition to buildings being vandalized in the Delmar Loop on Saturday, city police say agitators also vandalized 5 police cars and several officers had minor injuries. 9 people were arrested that night. 

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