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Efforts to promote safety in East Village after deadly library shooting

Residents say crime and homelessness crisis in East Village seem to be getting worse.

SAN DIEGO — East Village residents are voicing concerns over safety and say crime and the homelessness crisis in the area only seems to be getting worse.

The East Village Association and a group of residents called the 'East Village Doers' are working to make it a safer place.

"East Village is becoming very trendy hopefully the new Soho of San Diego," said Paul Garduno, the owner of Casa Octavio.

He admits you'll also see the streets of East Village lined with homeless encampments.

"Definitely yes it affects the business," Garduno said. 

CBS 8 has been reporting about the fatal shooting that happened outside the Central Library Tuesday.

"We acknowledge that there have been some high-profile stories that don't put East Village in the best light," said Dominic Limandri, the district manager for the East Village Association.

He says the association is recommitting its efforts to promote safety in the area.

"Just in the past few months we've been working with the mayor's office and Downtown Partnership Clean and Safe Program to get the street lights in East Village back on," he said. 

He said more than 400 streetlights have been out downtown from damage or vandalism. 

"We definitely need more help in the area and I definitely feel like our cries for help are going unnoticed," Cindy Cook.

Cook has lived in East Village for three years. She says she's seen people carrying butcher knifes, nun chucks and has even been chased down the sidewalk. She and her neighbors are stepping up. They've formed the 'East Village Doers' to advocate for the area.

"We've been showing up to city hall meetings and have monthly meetings to try to strategize of what we can do to help," she said.

She and the local businesses are trying to stay optimistic that the area can be improved.

"Help to clean up the area a little bit. Hopefully we can see a cleaner East Village," Garduno said.

The East Village Association is also hopeful that the city's proposed law to ban homeless encampments will help the area. The mayor's office told CBS 8 the full city council is expected to vote on the ordinance June 13.

WATCH RELATED: 1 killed, 1 injured in shooting at San Diego Central Library; suspect search underway (May 2023).


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