Leamington business owners worried about ‘big city’ crime
Concern over what some people call “big city” criminal activity is spreading through Leamington's uptown core.
Some business owners plan to meet with police and municipal officials to address issues ranging from drug trafficking to prostitution.
Leamington officials are planning to address the issues at an upcoming meeting, before the matter gets worse.
Reports of drug deals and prostitution in small downtown Leamington is getting the attention of the Leamington District Chamber of Commerce.
“We don't need a black eye,” says Chamber president Dave Campbell. “Leamington is really pulling itself up by the socks. We are going somewhere!"
Campbell hopes a few negative instances won't impact the friendly small town image Leamington has, saying he'll meet with the Business Improvement Association and municipality to improve things moving forward.
“We have problems with prostitution typically in the summer months and your normal crack dealers and that on the streets after hours," says Campbell.
Business owners in the town's core are encouraged with the idea of tackling the problems head on.
Crime Stoppers official Const. Leigh-Ann Godwin says this year alone 43 drug-related tips have resulted in 53 successful arrests.
"Yes there is activity in Leamington with drugs,” says Godwin.
Godwin says calling OPP or Crime Stoppers is the best thing people can do.
“The positive thing is the community is working together to keep it safe and calling crime stoppers and getting involved," she says.
David Foster at Abbeys Men's Clothing believes alternative assistance is another option.
“You've got Alcoholics Anonymous, you've got a clinic here in town that's dealing with the opiate issues," says Foster.
Foster adds maintaining a clean and welcoming environment will thwart most wrongdoing.