Milwaukee police hold crime and safety meeting ahead of Bucks' Game 5
MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- Fans and business owners were thrilled the Bucks had home court advantage Thursday night, but with the game now over, there is once again concern over the potential for violence downtown.
A good number of fans watched the game on Water Street.
Ahead of the game, police in District 1 held a crime and safety meeting. The captain clearly stated they're doing all they can, but admitted their resources are being stretched.
As Bucks fans flowed into Water Street bars, business owners were taking a seat at a meeting talking about crime trends.
Motor vehicle thefts in District 1 are up 547% in the last year, especially Kias and Hyundais.
"The stolen autos leading to higher violent crimes and unprecedented incidents, unprecedented behavior," said MPD Captain James Campbell.
Unruly late-night crowds have led to a couple of shootings in the Water Street area, including one that killed a man and one where a stray bullet pierced a resident's window.
"We are taking those resources and centering them to deal with the unruly nature of some of the crowds that are coming down on Water Street and that's not sustainable," said Capt. Campbell.
Some of the concern is that redeploying officers to Water Street leaves other neighborhoods vulnerable.
"I think that people who are involved with the Bucks maybe should step up security because they're the ones who are benefiting from it and even some of the businesses in the area," said Marshall Dixon, who lives nearby.
"Obviously, police right now are going through a lot of issues and problems and obviously the crime rate has gone up, so you know, they just have to figure out a strategy," said Water Street employee Chris Jackson.
But this is Game 5, and after a difficult Game 4 loss, Bucks fans down on Water Street Thursday night have only one thing on their minds.
"I guess Milwaukee's just gonna have to step it up," said Bucks fan Bennett Robson. "They can play better, Khris Middleton's gonna have to come out, Jrue Holiday, he's been slow a few games. You know, we got Bobby for us out there, go Bobby!"
Police said one other issue is that sometimes people are unnecessarily calling 911.
One example -- a person who called 911 about a flock of slow ducks in the street.
For non-emergencies call 933-4444.