LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — Neighbors near Winchester Road are looking for answers on who or what can remedy the violence in their area.
Last June, business owner Fred Roser was one of several community members who gathered at Bluegrass Baptist Church for a meeting with local officials after a string of shootings in their area.
Roser says community officials promised better.
"We just kind of got a feel-good, here we go, we're going to step up, have the police step up," explained Roser.
He says things improved, but it didn't last long.
"After about 30 days, it seems like out of sight, out of mind. And you know, we're back in the same rut again with the incident last night," said Roser.
Roser says even before Friday morning's shooting, he tried to reach out to his new council member and the mayor's office.
"You know, they said it's the COVID and we can't do this, and we can't do that. It's enough of excuses. Just get something done," said Roser.
He wants to see increased patrol, more police presence, and discussion at city hall.
"If we had something like that, then I don't think we would have as many shootings and killings. And all the nonsense that goes on around. I'm ready for it to be at an end. I mean, it's just, it's getting out of hand after a year. This is ridiculous," said Roser.
There were five shootings within the 900 block of Winchester Road in 2019, three in 2020, and three in 2021.
The community has largely blamed businesses at 987 Winchester Road, which has been a string of different nightclubs over the years.
Taz and Knowledgee took over ownership of the business in October and renamed it the Player's Club.
Residents have since blamed them for the nearby violence, including the shooting on Friday morning.
"We have one security guard that periodically walks the outside and makes sure there's nothing going on. But we are located in a bad neighborhood. So, if something happens, we can't be held responsible every time," said Taz.
But the owners say they have also called on the city to help.
"We have spoken with the police on a couple different occasions. They sat on here for a little while for us but they just said they're shorthanded," said Taz.
The last time we reached out to Lexington police they told us they do not provide security for independent establishments, only occasional patrol for hot spots.
The question community members are still waiting for an answer on is, if the businesses can't stop the violence and the city can't, who or what can?
"They need to set up some kind of cameras down Winchester road and see what's actually going on, monitor it. That way you don't have to put an officer out there," said one neighbor who wanted to remain anonymous.
Regardless, Roser says he's not letting it go.
"They can make it happen. Somebody can make it happen," said Roser.