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Crime a concern in downtown St. Louis

ST. LOUIS (KTVI) - It has been a violent couple of days in St. Louis. Some of the crimes occurred close to popular tourists spots. Mary Pat Carl is the lead homicide detective in the circuit attorney’s office said, “The only way this stops is if people come forward.”

Crimes against people including homicides, rapes, robbery and aggravated assault in the downtown neighborhood are down more than 19 percent this year as compared to last year.  Still, the violence can be jarring.  Carl said, “This is a particularly violent past couple of days.”

Three recent incidents were located near popular places for St. Louisans and visitors.  A 22-year- old man was found dead in the 5700 block of Elizabeth only blocks from away from well-known restaurants on The Hill.

Police discovered the body of a man inside a car located only steps away from the Old Courthouse and the Arch. He had been shot.

Sunday, a woman was stabbed in the throat on North First Street. She made it to a nearby casino seeking help. Tourists and downtown residents insist they are not going to be scared off by the violence.  Branden Canthavong lives downtown, “Crime it’s everywhere generally it can happen anywhere.”  Tricia Malone is from Alabama said, “I’m from a small town and we have murders there watch your surroundings.”

Police have charged 34-year-old Michael Smith with first degree assault and armed criminal action. He’s accused of stabbing the woman after an argument. Prosecutor said witnesses came forward.  Prosecutor Carl added, “I think people need to understand the only way to end the violence is if they do.”