ST. LOUIS – St. Louis police say 55 businesses were damaged and broken into during Monday night’s violence. Business owners spent Tuesday cleaning up and boarding up; but will they be giving up on whether to reopen?
Looters broke into 15 of the 17 stores at a shopping center at N. Grand Boulevard and Dr. Martin Luther King Drive. Those business owners now have the tough decision about whether they will reopen.
A sense of hope filled the shopping center as dozens of volunteers answered St. Louis Board of Alderman President Lewis Reed’s call to Restore St. Louis. People showed up with their gloves and rags throughout the city to help clean and support the business owners.
Meanwhile, residents are begging the looters to stop.
“When I see this, I cry, and I’m asking, I’m begging our people, cause you’re hurting everybody,” said Delores Riche. “It’s just not one person; you’re hurting everybody. Please stop.”
Reed said jobs have been lost as a result of the looting.
“This is hurting the people who work here, who live in this community…now have to do without a paycheck,” he said.
A representative for Denver-based Baceline Investments, which owns the property, said the company is going to help.
“Right now, it’s about securing the property and making sure our tenants know that we’re there for them, their landlord cares about them, and they are going to get back on their feet and we’re going to whatever we can to help them with that,” said regional property manager Tom Dicarlo.
Reed said Restore St. Louis established a GoFundMe to help damaged businesses get back on their feet.