PITTSBURGH, Pa. (WTAJ) — Leaders and officials in Pittsburgh are calling for action as violent crime and outrageous behavior is plaguing the South Side neighborhood.
KDKA in Pittsburgh reports members of the mayor’s office, city police and public safety held a virtual meeting Tuesday where they took questions from concerned residents and discussed the ongoing issues in the area. Police said they have responded to 140 calls within the past six weeks where several people were arrested, dozens of traffic and parking tickets were issued and over 60 vehicles were towed.
The crime in the neighborhood has also turned dangerous as a dog grooming business on 18th Street was struck by three stray bullets, KDKA reported. Allegheny County Magisterial District Judge Eugene Ricciardi called the violence in the South Side a war zone and is calling on state and local officials to declare a “crime state of emergency.”
City leaders have also discussed implementing a curfew as they say nightlife at bars in the neighborhood is contributing to the crime. Judge Ricciardi also spoke about an online video of a woman who was sexually assaulted at Foxtail/Skybar on East Carson Street.
The bar reportedly closed until further notice on July 12 and released a statement on its website saying it was the right decision to make.
“The climate for operating a nighttime economy business in the South Side has regressed to the point of being unstable and has led to a customer base that is problematic,” the bar management said in the statement. “We look forward to rejoining the community once a solution to the issues plaguing our neighborhood has been successfully implemented.”
None of the proposed actions have been implemented but leaders have also discussed installing better lighting and surveillance camera’s around South Side as well as changes to parking.
CBS News Pittsburgh contributed to this report.