Highlands residents, business owners blame bars for recent acts of violence

Highlands residents, business owners blame bars for recent acts of violence

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Residents and business owners near Baxter Avenue said they are fed up with recent incidents in the area.

Louisville Metro Police Department responded to reports of shots fired on Morton Avenue, near Baxter Avenue early Saturday morning. A neighbor captured the incident on camera, and said he has months of surveillance video. Just days earlier, a kidnapping and sexual assault was reported in the Highlands.

"The issues started around March when the weather turned nice and culminated last Friday evening with six shots fired," Chuck Woodall, President of the Highlands Neighborhood Association, said.

Woodall said he and his neighbors knew loud music would be an issue living behind the bars.

"It gets crazy around here between 2 and 3:30 a.m.," Woodall said.

Woman kidnapped at gun point, sexually assaulted in the Highlands

That's around the time that surveillance video from a house on Morton showed an altercation not far from Baxter Avenue on Saturday night. Shots are heard and moments later the police arrived.

Woodall said the unwanted visitors and violence stems from bars. There was a kidnapping and sexual assault reported in the Highlands at the end of November. Neighbors say this is more example of the trouble late-night hours bring.

"Sometimes it gets confusing because there are other bars in the area," Yogesh Pal, owner of Nirvana on Bardstown Road. "We really need to see where the sound is coming from."

Pal said Nirvana hosts a wide variety of events but has not had an issue with violence. LMPD's Fifth Division reported crime in the area to be down 18% from last year. When there is enough manpower, LMPD spokesperson Dwight Mitchell said extra patrols work the bar area.

"When you fill up the bars you are going to have problems," Woodall said. "The security needs to deal with it and keep it inside their four walls."

Detectives have not released new information regarding Saturday's incident.

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