MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Memphis store owners said they do not trust anyone after a well-known business owner was gunned down outside his Berclair store last week.
The “Z” Market opened its doors Tuesday for the first time since Ahmad Khmous, 30, was gunned down outside the store on June 27.
Police said Dorsey Rawls, 39 – who is in a wheelchair – shot and killed Khmous (also known as Adam) outside his convenience store on Waring Road after he attempted to kick Rawls off the property.
Download the FOX13 Memphis app to receive alerts from breaking news in your neighborhood.
According to people in the area, Rawls – who is homeless – was harassing store owners in the shopping center last week.
Habtamu Mores owns a business next door and was a close friend of Khmous. He told FOX13 he is “very afraid” after the deadly shooting.
FOX13 spoke with “Z” Market employees after reopening their business Tuesday.
“Just the police should have a gun, just the police,” said Karam Salim.
Store owners in the area have surveillance cameras outside their businesses, but Memphis police encourage them to make sure it is installed properly.
Officers also encouraged hiring security personnel if necessary.
“Stop gun violence, please!” said Mores. “We love Memphis, we love people… why kill people, why?”
MPD has already stepped up patrols in high-crime areas. Although officers encourage business owners to participate in neighborhood and business watch programs as well, they said very few business owners come to the meetings.
One police source told FOX13 he is going to several businesses and talking to store owners one-on-one about safety measures.
However, some said they are afraid to call police.
“Now I can’t call (police),” Mores said. “Because nothing protect me because they come late. I’m telling the truth.”
Police said they want business owners to keep working with their local precincts.
One of the reasons they’re seeing low turnouts at business watch meetings is because of schedule conflicts with businesses.
That’s why they’re working right now to revamp their program.
Cox Media Group