Seminole Heights businesses hurting after 4 murders

Olde Heights Bistro struggling for support

TAMPA, Fla. - Customers were already scarce in Seminole Heights after three victims were shot and killed.

"It's gotten worse. Things have really hit home,” said Olde Heights Bistro Manager Natalia Mendez.

Then Tuesday, it happened again.


"The continuance of this violence is just completely shocking, so shocking,” said Mendez.

The Olde Heights Bistro closed Tuesday. They had to because police blocked their parking lot as officers hunted a serial shooter.

"Just one day because we're such a small business. Just one day, makes a big, it hits us hard," said Mendez.

Harder than businesses guessed it would be.

"A lot of them come in now later in the morning. They're not coming in as early as they used to before work or whatever,” said Blind Tiger Café Manager Robert Roa.

Blind Tiger Cafe doesn't see customers now until sun-up.

"They need people to just keep showing up. Obviously, you have to be vigilant. Don't go out alone. Don't go out when it's dark or whatever. Come in groups,” said Roa.

And it's not just businesses. It's families too.

"My son says, 'so there's a killer man but we don't know who he is? We don't know his name?' He's coming up with all these ideas and stories about it and I've talked to him a little bit but he's five and he's seen all this police activity,” explained Mendez.

A presence neighbors are thankful for and hope will stop the gunman.

"This is an uphill battle for sure,” said Mendez.

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