MEMPHIS, Tenn. — With the influx of visitors to Memphis this month, there’s been a lot of foot traffic downtown – leading to fights, assaults, stampedes, or “surges,” of people on Beale Street.
The controversial ‘Beale Street Bucks’ program was re-implemented for much of the month of May in an attempt to halt crime.
Despite this, there have been several incidents on the iconic street as recently as Sunday night and early Monday morning.
Video from a FOX13 viewer shows a massive crowd rushing through the west entrance of Beale Street.
One man was arrested for assault and another woman was hospitalized because of the surge, according to police reports.
Later in an unrelated incident, there were multiple other arrests.
Court documents said Shelby Anthony was yelling and screaming in a crowd of about 200 people. She was dared to jump on the hood of a police car, and when she did, documents said the crowd got rowdy.
Anthony was arrested, and police horses were deployed to disperse the group. Court documents said that’s when Justin Penn punched a police horse – leading to two other arrests.
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Officers told FOX13 they had to temporarily pause entry to calm the crowds due to the weekend stampede, but this wasn’t the first weekend Beale Street has seen a surge of people.
Earlier this month, FOX13 reported a shooting, stampede, and an assault on Beale Street.
The City of Memphis paid for a security consultant to review security changes. This includes better lighting, more security, surveillance cameras, and dispersing the crowd to other entrances, among other recommendations.
The spokesperson for the Memphis Police Department told the FOX13 that they’re not responsible for fencing and barriers or decisions regarding them – that’s the Downtown Memphis Commission.
FOX13 obtained a statement from Jennifer Oswalt, president of the DMC:
"We are grateful for a strong MPD presence on Beale and throughout downtown, in general. In conjunction with MPD, we are continuing to work towards full implementation of the 24 recommendations/operational improvements suggested by our security consultants."
Cox Media Group