WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Wilmington Police are investigating a series of assaults that happened in the downtown area near bar closing time.
WPD says the investigation reveals that the assaults may have started several months ago.
Police reports the crimes all involve men who were assaulted and some were robbed. They say details are limited due to the condition of the victims at the time the incidents happened.
WWAY hit Front Street Monday evening to see how bar patrons felt about the news.
“This is the first time I’ve actually heard about it. It’s shocking,” said Wilmington resident and former downtown bartender Jarrett Mlodzinski.
“I have heard of them, but honestly every time I’ve been downtown, the scuffles have been fairly contained,” said Wilmington native Skyler Randolph. “It’s just a few people having a bad night.”
Mlodzinski says things can get a little out of hand after the bars close.
“You tend to see a lot of things happen on the street, there’s a lot of people always asking for change and things like that, so it’s not out of the ordinary that something like that could happen,” he said.
Patrols have been increased downtown and detectives are actively investigating these crimes. Why we’re just now learning about the assaults remains unclear.
“I think there should have been some kind of broad announcement that all of Wilmington should be concerned, because most of Wilmington revolves around downtown Wilmington,” Mlodzinski said.
However, not everyone is concerned.
“I’ve lived here my whole life, I’ve never had any real issues with coming downtown, so I’m not really too concerned about it,” Randolph said.
Police want to remind people who choose to drink at public places to exercise caution, never drink and drive and don’t leave bars alone.
If you know any information, call the Wilmington Police Department at (910) 343-3609 or use Text-a-Tip.