Green Bay police and bar owners working together after weekend disturbance
GREEN BAY - Green Bay police say people with cell phones and cameras hindered officers from handling a disturbance on Washington Street.
Hundreds of people crowded outside at bar close last Saturday as police looked for a man with a loaded gun.
Police showed FOX 11 surveillance video obtained from a Washington Street bar.
"It began with a call of a man with a gun," said Captain Jim Runge.
Crowds of people are milling about.
"Estimating 150 to 200 plus are out here at one time," commented Runge as I watched the video with him.
People were coming and going outside The Nines and Stir-ups Parlor & Saloon.
"The first responding officers were distracted from looking for that person because people insisted on getting in his face, getting too close, with their cell phone videos," Runge explained.
I asked Runge if people may have been monitoring officers after the investigation into this cell phone arrest video involving Green Bay Police Officer Derek Wicklund.
"That might have played some of it, somebody might have thought I'm going to get the next one," Runge said.
Officers needed to call three other agencies for help.
Police eventually arrested Salvador Nunez after he got into a scuffle with two other men. Nunez has been charged with carrying a concealed weapon without a permit, and disorderly conduct.
Runge says besides the main fight that happened outside the bars on Washington Street there were also several minor scuffles plus people acting disorderly and obstructing police.
"Everybody else thought they wanted to be involved with something that had nothing to do with them. And that's the issue," Runge said.
"What happened isn't what normally happens downtown, nor do we want that to keep on happening," said The Nines general manager Travis Engels.
Engels and other bar owners in the area have met with police to discuss strategies. That includes more security on the street.
"You put a cop outside or a police officer outside, you know, people tend to calm down tend to move disperse like they should," explained Engels.
"We're going to increase our surveillance cameras as well, and continue to work with the Green Bay Police Department to make downtown safer," said Stir-ups Parlor & Saloon general manager Don Rouse.
Runge says police are looking for more surveillance video cameras that may have captured any other incidents. He adds citations could be issued.
Runge adds this is not typical behavior for the downtown, and that is why police are taking it so seriously.