A violent crime last month in downtown Spokane has community members rallying together to prevent future incidents like it but police are warning against it.
On January 27 a couple was attacked by a group of teens as they were leaving from the Steam Plant Grill. The incident has since sparked outrage in the community causing people to form groups in attempts to prevent future incidents like this, however the Spokane Police Department opposes their efforts.
Police met with members of the council during a special meeting to discuss downtown violence and, although the number of crimes in the downtown core is down, a call for action is up after a recent incident where a couple was attacked by a group of juveniles.
"I really thought they were killing him, they were punching his face, they were punching the back of his head," Billie Palmer said.
Palmer's husband Bruce sustained several injuries in the January 27 attack including a broken nose. One person was arrested and faces second-degree assault charges and more arrests could be coming as the investigation continues. In the meantime citizens are taking matters into their own hands to make downtown a safe place.
"We need to do something right now to show downtown there is a presence, that we are listening to them, we heard it, and I'm just calling for help," Nathan McKenzie O'Neill said.
O'Neill is rallying volunteers on Facebook to act as the eyes and the ears of the city.
"T-shirts, maybe arm bands, something to show Spokane that we are aware that we are around and if we see something to happen, make a phone call," O'Neill said.
And that's what police want, a phone call. However, they're not fond with the idea of a group watch.
"We like to have people that are trained. We don't want anyone putting themselves in a dangerous situation," Spokane Police Captain Judi Carl said, adding that's the job of the police department.
Spokane Police say that for those who want to help they have various volunteer programs where they provide professional training.