Greenville leaders meet to discuss solutions to Uptown violence

GREENVILLE, NC (WITN) The Nighttime Economy Safety Team, known as NEST, met Tuesday for the second time to discuss ways to improve safety after dark in Greenville.

More than two dozen people attended the meeting at Sheppard Memorial Library.

The NEST comes after recent violence in the Uptown area including a deadly stabbing in October and a fatal officer-involved shooting in September.

Since the NEST was created in October, the city has taken other steps to address some issues.

Greenville Police have increased their roaming patrols and increased blue lights in the parking lots.

Greenville Police Chief Mark Holtzman says, "This isn't something we can fix overnight it's going to take a community to fix. There's many different ways to approach safety in the downtown. The police department is just one of them."

In 2018 GPD reported 18 violent crimes in the Uptown area. This is up 50 percent from 2017.

Since the NEST started there have been no new violent crimes but local businesses also say their peak season is now winding down now that it is getting colder outside.