Business owners getting upset over loiterers

By  | 

LINCOLN, Neb. (KOLN) -- In recent years, some local business owners said they've seen an increase in the amount of people sitting on the streets. They're loiterers and panhandlers hanging around in the 14th and "O" Street area.

"It's affecting my business because some people, they smell bad.... I have a line and they stop in the line and it smells so some people get out of my line," said Ahmad Sultani, Owner of Gourmet Grill.

Sultani has worked downtown for 12 years and said he's seen an increase in the amount of people hanging around.

"They sleep behind the door sometimes, we have a lot of problems with that," he said.

He said he's never called the police but other business owners have.

Lincoln Police Department said there isn't much they can do unless someone is breaking the law. They can cite someone if they block an entrance, or for public urination, becoming aggressive or panhandling close to an ATM.

Jason Dohman said he comes to the area about once a month for lunch.

"I don't know if there's anything you can do about it. The other day I gave a lady a dollar over by the Hy-Vee where I live over on the corner, then two days later I see her at the U-Stop buying vodka for her and her friend," said Dohman.