Downtown West residents asking for city leaders and police intervention after violent weekend

Published: Jul. 31, 2022 at 10:16 PM CDT
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ST. LOUIS (KMOV) - The St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department has reported at least four separate shooting incidents in Downtown and Downtown West this past weekend. Multiple people were injured and sent to the hospital. Property and cars were also damaged by flying bullets. Residents said they’re fed up with the ongoing shootings, drag racing and general chaos on weekends. They said they want the city to do more to stop it.

“There’s no guarantee for safety outside of our loft door,” Matt Spencer said.

Spencer got a front-row seat to some of Saturday’s overnight chaos.

“Additional noises started coming across like the crunch of a vehicle, like it crashed into something. In addition to that, several gun shots,” Spencer explained.

Spencer’s cell phone video shows multiple groups of what looks like teenagers walking up and down Washington Avenue. Those same groups are seen in photos and videos, carrying weapons.

“As I’m watching, the armed gunmen are walking down the street and they had assault rifles,” Spencer said.

Spencer said he believes the group of men carrying weapons were involved in this weekend’s shootings, however, no one has been arrested or charged for any of the incidents yet.

“It’s unlike anything I’ve ever experienced personally. I’ve lived in multiple Downtown areas before, and this is the most extreme,” Tyler Calhoun said.

Calhoun also lives in Downtown West. He said it’s hard to feel safe when there are people walking around with assault weapons every weekend. The four shootings that police are reporting happened between 13th Street and 21st Street and as far north as Convention Plaza and south as Washington Avenue. On 21st and Lucas Street, late Friday night, a shootout happened behind an apartment complex.

“It was kind of horrifying, sounded like World War III, you know, like ‘bop’ ‘bop’ ‘bop’ ‘bop’, crazy,” one resident said.

This resident wants to remain anonymous and said they’re fearing for their safety after this weekend’s shooting.

“There was two young males standing in front of my unit with automatic weapons shooting at someone who was on the opposite side of the far fence,” they said.

The parking lot behind the apartment building has several cars with bullet holes and shattered glass. There are even some apartment windows with bullet holes. Every resident News 4 talked to Sunday said the city and police need to step it up.

“We just don’t see the reaction we’d like to see to feel safe in our buildings and on the street,” Spencer said.

“The people know they can just come through here and run rough shop through the city. If they know they’re not going to get in trouble, what’s the point,” Calhoun added.

News 4 plans to ask city public safety leaders about this weekend’s downtown violence at their weekly press conference Monday at 11 a.m.