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Business owners in Barrio Logan complain prostitution is rampant

California law decriminalized loitering for the purposes of prostitution in effect since July 1.

SAN DIEGO — The complaints keep coming from business owners off Main Street in Barrio Logan, concerned about out-of-control prostitution.

Some believe a new state law decriminalizing loitering seems to be making the problem worse.

Surveillance video recorded over the weekend on Dalbergia Street showed six women on the same street corner, as a parade of cars drove by appearing to solicit prostitution.

“It’s getting worse. The hookers are there day and night,” said one businessman who wanted to remain anonymous. “There’s no policing of the area.  And it's a free-for-all.”

The businessman said he was afraid of pimps patrolling the area in expensive vehicles.

“We've heard gunshots in the middle of the day.  We've seen hookers run up and down the street, chase people out of their cars.  They walk right up to your car.  They will open up your door as they're walking by. You slam your door and they take it as an aggression towards them.  You have to drive off and if there's a pimp in the area, he will chase you down,” the businessman said.

One businesswoman told me she believes the situation has gotten worse since the governor signed a state law last month that decriminalized loitering for the purpose of prostitution.

“I don’t even understand that law. I don't even know how something like that gets passed,” the businessman said.

CBS 8 reached out to the San Diego Police Department and District 8 San Diego City Councilwoman, Vivian Moreno, who represents Barrio Logan.  

Neither office responded.

“We don't see any patrolling of the area.  It doesn't take much for an officer to sit out there and just park his car and just show a presence, but they won't even do that,” the businessman said.

CBS 8 will be filing public records requests with SDPD in the coming weeks to try and determine whether prostitution arrests have increased in the area since the loitering law went into effect on July 1.

WATCH RELATED: San Diego Police Department targets prostitution off Main Street in Barrio Logan (Oct. 2021)

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