You can’t blame neighbors of two Albuquerque 7-Eleven stores for feeling vindicated when the City Council recently took the unusual step of slapping two operating businesses with a “public nuisance” designation (a tool usually used for abandoned buildings) and ordering proprietors to start making some changes, and fast.
How could you? People who live and work near the stores at 3801 Central NE and 5401 Kathryn SE have to put up with crime constantly spilling over onto their yards and into their communities. According to a Nov. 5 story by Journal reporter Jessica Dyer, police responded to the two stores a combined total of 733 times in one 16-month period. Most of those calls were for disturbances, but a shooting, three stabbings and multiple assaults were also reported.
But neighbors aren’t the only victims in this all-too-familiar tale. In addition to the actual crime victims and the neighbors who have front-row seats, the people who manage and staff – and likely those who own – the 7-Elevens are suffering, too. Dealing with the causes of 733 police calls is a hard way to make a living.
And slapping a label on the problem offers little hope of a long-term solution.