Residents, businesses respond to wave of weekend violence downtown

Local News

DENVER – Denver Police have arrested two men for the deadly shooting outside Coors Field on Friday night. 30-year-old Rayvell Powell and 21-year-old Javon Price are being held on investigation of first degree murder. They were both concession workers at Coors Field, as was the victim who was killed. An innocent bystander was also critically wounded.

News of the arrests come as a relief to people who live and work downtown. Tona Worrell lives a few blocks from the ballpark.

“It happens a lot in this area so it’s a good thing they can stay on top of it more,” Worrell said. “I worry because my son lives close by, so I always have to worry about that, him coming home from work. You’re walking down the street, you always have to worry.”

The shooting happened just an hour after a Rockies game ended and was one of several shootings in Denver over the weekend, which concerns downtown business owners.

“It really hits close to home when there’s a shooting just one block away. It certainly scared the heck out of my staff and the guests that were here,” said Chris Fuselier, owner of Blake Street Tavern. “I’m extremely worried. Downtown is not like it used to be. We have to make downtown vibrant. It’s the key to the city. If downtown is having issues, it affects everyone. I can’t quite say it’s a trend yet, but It’s alarming and a lot of people are talking about it.”

Fuselier took part in the mayor’s economic recovery council meeting on Tuesday morning. He said on the night of the shooting, his restaurant made $4,000-$5,000 less than they normally do. Other restaurant owners expressed similar concerns.

“I’ve talked to my friends who have businesses downtown. We all have the same concerns. We’re going to reach out to city council, the mayor’s office. Especially city council because we are talking about budgets,” Fuselier said. “There shouldn’t be any talk now of defunding the police, like what was happening last summer. The talk now needs to be re-funding the police as in giving them more money. In fact, increasing the budget so there can be a greater police presence downtown.”

Some tourists in the area didn’t seem overly concerned about the recent violence. “It’s life. Life in the city. Does it worry you? I mean if I lived here it might, but probably not even then,” said Dan Richmond, who is visiting Denver from Seattle.

The restaurant owners will meet again next Tuesday to discuss more about preventing violence and making the area safer for their employees and guests.

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