DENVER (KDVR) — A businessman in the Park Hill neighborhood said he may have to close his doors and relocate after continued violence outside of his shop, most recently over the weekend.
James Chapman, owner of “The Buttonman Shop,” said the shooting outside the Hell’s Lovers Motorcycle Club this weekend could force him to close up shop. The shooting happened early Sunday morning. Two people were killed and five more were injured.
The Buttonman Shop has been around for nearly a decade, creating shirts, buttons and all types of novelty items. Chapman said he wants to serve his community, but people don’t feel safe coming to him anymore.
“It’s been unexpected and it’s been traumatizing,” Chapman said. “Due to the violence, it’s like people are questioning coming up here. We survived the pandemic, but it’s really difficult surviving random violence.”
Relocating a business is costly, especially one that’s been struggling. Chapman set up a GoFundMe to help offset those costs. The fundraiser can be found here.
The most difficult part for him is that he loves serving his Park Hill neighborhood.
“The joy out of it is when the community wants a genuine piece of artwork, we here at the Buttonman Shop provide a genuine effort of creating what they want,” Chapman said.
His impact in Park Hill is far more than his shop. He helps to mentor kids, among others.
“We have the African American leadership school across the street and the Boys and Girls Club, which we as community business owners, we lobby to create and help keep the neighborhood vibrant,” Chapman said. “The random act of violence has been really detrimental to our program and to our involvement because the community feels unsafe.”