The scene was described as chaos in the streets last week as people ran away from Downtown Mobile after two people were shot in the leg. Some in the business community blamed it on a “illegal block party” promotion. But the scene was relatively quiet Saturday night.
In fact downtown was more crowded last night with cars than people. A Facebook posting had advertised a “Bourbon Street Style Protest,” however that was apparently canceled. Mobile Police Assistant Chief Lawrence Battiste was also out patrolling the streets, he says officers spent last week speaking with business owners about their concerns. Some told us they wanted more done to manage crowds so patrons could get around.
“We’re trying to encourage people when they come down to support he businesses that are down here. The entertainment district is about having people come down here to help spur the economy by patronizing businesses down here, not to have open block parties and drink alcohol in the streets. There’s certain things they have to do, there’s criteria that have to be followed even to have a block party. They can have them, but there’s a permit process they have to go through in order to do that so that we can get additional personnel for those events.,” said Chief Battiste.
Other visitors we talked with told us they believed the shooting was an isolated incident, and felt safe. Battiste added officers will monitor the area and adjust patrols as deemed necessary.