EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) – It was a quiet night in the Cincinnati Entertainment District in West El Paso on Monday night, but it was a different scene in the early hours of the morning.
El Paso police officers responded to a shooting around 2 a.m. that killed a man.
According to EPPD, 26-year-old Darion Marquez Williams was shot dead in front of the Chino Chido bar in the popular entertainment area.
As KTSM reported, a fight broke out in the bar and was then taken outside when the bouncers removed them. Then investigators say Williams was shot.
UPDATE: Man dies in front of the West El Paso Bar early Monday morning
As the Crimes Against Individuals Division continues its investigation, local residents and bar owners say something needs to be done to stop the violence in the area.
KTSM received data from an open record request on 911 calls to the area. In January 2021 alone, there were at least eight calls for violent crime, including fighting, assault and stab wounds, in the Cincinnati area.
El Paso police officers told KTSM that the violence has increased recently.
Most incidents start in the bars, customers consume too much, and arguments and / or fights start and those involved are brought out. That only suppresses the problem that is carried over to the outside world.
Sgt. Enrique Carrillo, EPPD spokesman
According to the EPPD, the Westside Regional Command Center has deployed additional officers to provide targeted patrols in and around the Cincinnati district, particularly on the so-called “peak nights” of Thursday, Friday and Saturday.
A resident of Kern Place, who asked not to share his name, said he lived in the area for four years. He said they had been continually concerned since they moved in.
“Everything in this area in Kern is great, except what’s going on here at 1am and 2am,” said the resident.
He said he would have no problem with the Cincinnati area if it weren’t for the fighting, violence, and beer cans and bottles in the area.
“I would have no problem with people coming down, having a responsible drink, being with friends. I did it with friends when I was younger, but the violence is not good for this community,” said the resident.
The resident said he tried to reach out to the police and El Paso MP Peter Svarzbein who serves the District 1 area including Kern.
Rep. Svarzbein’s office told KTSM that he was unable to make an official statement as the investigation was pending. However, he is aware of the situation and would like to address it soon.
The resident of Kern Place, who spoke to KTSM, said the solution would have to come from local residents, bar owners and the city government together.
“It’s a big problem here, it affects all of El Paso, knowing that an area is a high crime area where knife wounds and now murders are taking place,” the resident said.
Just weeks before the shooting, on January 24th, police reacted to a sting in the Cincinnati Entertainment District, KTSM previously reported. An arrest in this case was made on February 5.
Update: Police ID stabs victim in Cincinnati entertainment area
Frank Ricci, owner of Rockin ‘Cigar Bar and Grill on Cincinnati Ave., said he saw a surge in violence.
“I’m not sure if it’s a social issue, if people have trouble getting cooped up and then released into the world, but the world of good old-fashioned fistfighting is around the corner I think. Now we’re going to stab and shoot each other, ”said Ricci.
He said he saw people usually get into arguments around 2 a.m. when people fill the streets after a night of drinking.
“We used to fill this room with people we never had a situation like this – a knife stab one week and a shooting the next – we can’t have that anymore,” said Ricci.
He added it was bad for business too, especially as many bars are trying to recover from pandemic-related losses.
EPPD said excessive drinking is fueling the struggles. Ricci agreed that people with too much alcohol can become uninhibited.
“They have two lives that are destroyed when someone bumps into a friend, something stupid where it might not have happened to someone who may not have had drinks,” Ricci said.
The bar owner said he was looking for a way to make changes to his establishment to change the nature of the business.
“We’re going to make a pay cut, but at the same time I think there is a need to reassess the type of business we are getting and attracting as a street as a whole,” said Ricci.
He added, however, that the ultimate responsibility rests with those who engage in fighting, violence, or too much alcohol.
“We as bar or restaurant owners have to look at what we are doing, what we can do to change this so that this doesn’t happen on our part, but ultimately the responsibility rests with the individuals,” said Ricci.
The police did not arrest the shooting.
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