People hope police doubling presence around East Ave will keep everyone safe

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ROCHESTER, NY (WROC)- Rochester police officers and state police will be in the bar district around East Avenue monitoring the bars and controlling crowds, after a crowd of close to 1,000 people gathered last weekend, two people were shot, and police were forced to clear the streets. 

Rochester Police is doubling their presence in the bar district around East Avenue and some people in the area say it’s a good idea.

“I’m fine with it as long as it keeps the danger level down,” said Chris Hellyar.

“I mean I feel safe no matter what but still I feel even safer knowing there are going to be more police patrols down here,” said Allan Odell.

Increased foot patrols and state police check points will target large crowds and bars not in compliance.

The move comes after a crowd of close to 1,000 gathered here last weekend. When officers tried to clear the crowd, bottles were thrown at officers, leading to two arrests. Two people were also shot in violence stemming from the gathering. 

Police will be making sure bars stay under 50% capacity and promoting social distancing 

“Folks can come out have a good time feel safe but the fact of the matter is with the current pandemic and the restrictions of covid, we can’t handle the crowds of the east end safely that we use to be able to handle. We need to reduce that,” said Captain David Smith with the Rochester Police Department.

Police say they are working with the bars and will be checking in periodically throughout the weekend nights to make sure they’re in compliance.

The increased patrols will continue every weekend for the foreseeable future. 

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