WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) – Since 1998, violent crime in downtown Wilmington has dropped 67%. John Hinnant with Wilmington Downtown, Inc. attributes that decrease to a pro-active approach that the city is taking to cut down on the amount of alcohol consumption in downtown Wilmington.
Two years ago, the Wilmington Police Department teamed up with city leaders to form the Nightlife Task Force. Their main goal was to make downtown cleaner and safer.
After a deadly incident outside of one local bar, the city came up with a new policy. The ABC Commission took revenue from their own pockets and put that money back into local law enforcement. By decreasing the amount of bars in the area by 15%, Hinnant says local law enforcement has seen a major drop in crime.
"It's not as rowdy, not as crazy, it's just healthier," said Hinnant. "It's still young and fun and still a lot of people come down here, but it's healthier now. With a 15% decrease, I think we've found a better medium than we've had before."
Violent crime is one of many topics that John Hinnant and other speakers will cover at the Downtown Economic Series on Wednesday at the Wilmington Convention Center.
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