Business owners are concerned, but not surprised following this week’s deadly triple shooting in Norman.
The shootings happened behind several Main Street businesses.
Several business owners who spoke to KOCO 5 and use the alley for parking and trash disposal said it’s not safe, particularly after dark.
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“She’s like, ‘You almost hit my bicycle. You try to hit my bicycle,’ she’s like, ‘I’ll kill you,’” business owner Michael Hooper said, describing an interaction with someone in the alley. “We have female artists in here who are younger. They won’t go outside in the evenings and if they do, we escort them out.”
Businesses say the problems started about a year ago.
“I guess it’s called the warming shelter that’s just right behind our business. I’ve had, personally, run-ins with — at least four times — with people back there. They’re very, very confrontational, they’re aggressive,” Hooper said.
The problems in the alley got worse Thursday night when police shot a suspect they believe shot two other people, killing one of them. Hooper was there to witness it.
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“They were all converging there in the back, telling a person to roll over and comply and at that point we decided that’s when we probably needed to go back inside,” he said.
He said he’s not surprised the shootings happened.
“We’re surprised it hasn’t happened sooner,” he said.
Businesses say they understand the need for the warming shelter, but they wish it could be moved elsewhere. Police haven’t released the identities of the victims or suspect.