PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Philadelphia police are cracking down in a new way to combat the surge in gun violence. The crackdown comes after a pair of shootings on the same South Philadelphia street, just hours apart.
Law enforcement and city agencies are ratcheting up pressure on alleged nuisance businesses, as Philadelphia grips with another night of life-taking violence.
In a separate shooting in South Philadelphia on Monday night, chilling screams pierced the air after two people were killed near 21st Street and Point Breeze Avenue. Tamika Walker was one of the victims.
“There’s no explanation for it, lives are lost for nothing, literally nothing. Shows you the value of life, people don’t care about it,” Rafael Thomas said.
“She was an excellent grandmother, I mean, this one hurts, this really hurts,” Thomas said
A total of four people were struck by bullets two are dead on the same street.
Several miles away a show of force, four businesses were shuttered in the middle of the day.
Police, city agencies and liquor control enforcement were on the ground at 23rd Street and Cecil B. Moore Avenue for hours, one man was upset with the amount of police presence.
“All these police, they scare people, make you not want to come by and patronize the stores, seeing cops out here, thinking it’s a heavy crime area,” North Philadelphia resident Akbar Bradley said.
But just 20 feet from where Bradley was standing, a woman was murdered a week earlier.
Council President Darrel Clarke described the stores as nuisances and while not connected to the carnage overnight, officials say the takeaway is that they’re watching.
“The simple reality is that there are a lot of these facilities throughout the city, this one in particular has been a problem in this neighborhood,” Clarke said. “The public drinking, gambling, things that may on the exterior of the store, it causes a lot of problems.”
At least some of the businesses shuttered on Tuesday will be able to reopen as their violations move through the court system.