abc
QUICK LINKS:

Bartender Gets Community in on Downtown Crime Prevention

Created: 12/02/2013 11:19 PM WDIO.com

A Duluth bartender tells Eyewitness News she's fed up with crime downtown, and it's time for her to get involved in the fight against it.

Bartender Jona Johnson said Monday "I want to stay in the Hillside area because I like that area."

The 30-year-old does a lot of walking downtown. She works in downtown, lives nearby, and she's got big ideas.

"I want to make it safer for the people who do walk around downtown."

Johnson has been a bartender on and off for the last decade. Over the last year she said it seems she's been hearing more stories of people being attacked or jumped. But it wasn't until about two weeks ago her friends were jumped near 4th Avenue East and Superior Street that she decided to do something about it.

"It just was like the final straw for me it hit so close to home," she said.

Enough was enough. So Johnson took to Facebook, then set up a meeting about what to do next. "I had no idea who would come but a lot of people reached out to me."

Johnson said about 10 people showed up - a police officer and other community members.

"We're still in the really beginning phases of even approaching the city and coming up with ideas," she said.

She's got plenty already.

"A couple people each week go out and kind of patrol the streets." Like a downtown Citizen Patrol. She said police could help make it happen.

Johnson said "there are ways that they will donate cell phones and vests and help us with that program."

Why now? In addition to last month's attack she said "a lot of it has to do with the face that I'm a mother now."

She has an 11-month-old girl and wants to "make sure she can grow up in a great place."

Johnson said the next step is to take her ideas to other downtown bars to get their input.

Front Page

  • Pride Parade is Twin Ports' Biggest Yet

    As hundreds gathered to watch the Duluth Superior Pride Festival's annual parade Sunday, many of those marching said it was moving to see such a wide base of support. 

  • 1 Injured in Crow Wing County Crash

    A Brainerd man was injured when he lost control of his car and crashed on Highway 210 near Riverton Sunday. The Minnesota State Patrol said the accident happened just after 10 a.m. The man suffered non-life-threatening injuries.

  • Storms Light Up Skies Over Lake Superior

    Storms moving across Lake Superior lit up the skies in Duluth on Sunday. WDIO Photographer Jamie Merideth captured the sight from West Skyline Parkway around 8:40 p.m.

  • Minnesota State Fair Sets All-Time Attendance Record Saturday

    The Minnesota State Fair experienced a record-breaking day on Saturday. Fair officials said 252,092 people attended, breaking the all-time record for the highest attended single day in the fair's history. As of Saturday, people visited the fairgrounds nearly 1.5 million times this year.

  • St. Paul Police Defend Officers in Stun-Gun Video

    The St. Paul police union is defending three officers caught on camera using a stun gun on a man who was sitting in a downtown skyway. The man said he did nothing wrong. Police say he refused "numerous lawful orders for an extended period of time."

 
Advertisement