Local small businesses to help Seminole Heights victims' families

Business owners say it's time to fight the fear

SEMINOLE HEIGHTS, Fla. - On the peaceful streets of Seminole Heights, there's a darker undertone to the front porch chat. Three murders in 10 days in the same neighborhood.

"The names of these people which I choose not to call victims Monica, Benjamin, Anthony, are always on our minds," says Real Estate Agent Brian Frey. "When a darkness like this has infiltrated our community we kick it into high gear."

Brian contacted Seminole Heights United Methodist, which is now hosting the funeral for Anthony Naiboa, the recent hight school graduate who was the third person killed. Then, Brian received a stunning offer from his neighbor.

"Out of the blue (he) just said if he needs a plot we have one that we’d be willing and happy to give to the family. How do you respond to something like that? Thank you, thank you," says Brian.

As the memorial sight grows for Anthony Naiboa, so does the support from the small business community but some of those small businesses could use help themselves as fear is starting to take over and keeping people inside.

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"A tragic thing like this happens and it’s a big set back for us," says Philip Hutchinson, who owns the Olde Heights Bistro.

The drop off in business is clear when you walk in.

"It’s just heart and soul community," he says.

And Heart and soul will always beat fear.

Even outside of Seminole Heights, the businesses are helping. Brio Tuscan Grill in South Tampa is offering the Naiboa family food. 

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