RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- ABC11 went one-on-one with Raleigh Police Department to ask what it is doing to prevent crime in and around downtown.
"We try to be out there, we try and be predictive and try to be precise in the response that we have," said Lt. Peter Manukas.
Crime isn't sky-high as ABC11 found last week, but the number of incidents in Moore Square is up 81% in the past year.
"We can't just send them off, we have to give them the help they need if they're willing to get it," said Manukas, who is in charge of operations in Moore Square and in and around Glenwood South.
He said RPD has heard complaints from business owners about the growing homeless population that we documented last week.
"We heard the concerns and we have a specific unit that works around Moore Square and the transit mall every day," he said.
Andrew Ullom is at the end of the workday at Union Special.
But when you run a place like this, work never really stops.
"We're all trying to do our best to get up in the morning, have a strong cup of coffee and go to work," he said.
He opened a shop on Fayetteville Street in 2021 in addition to his main location off Atlantic Avenue in Gateway Plaza
But he hasn't seen that post-pandemic bounce back downtown.
"Everybody is still very hopeful and over the last two years, we've seen downtown grow physically but the traffic is not there," he said.
Andrew said the growing homeless population has always been there, too. He worked in downtown Raleigh restaurants for years before opening his business.
"I would love to focus on needs and solutions downtown vs. saying crime is sky-high," he said.
RPD has tried to target where and what times their police officers walk around. They focus on rush-hour times in the morning and evening.
Ullom is trying to wait it out as long as he can for more business on Fayetteville Street though he can't wait forever.
"I understand the need to stay positive but there's also a need to be practical and say 'OK, it isn't working let's try something else,'" Ullom said.