Bulldozers took down what was left of a once-busy homeless encampment along the Mississippi River and near the Gateway Arch in St. Louis, ending nearly a year of debate over what to do about it.
While some homeless advocates say the camp should have been left alone, business owners and others cited concerns about increasing drug use and crime, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported.
The last of the encampment was torn down Friday. A spokesman for Mayor Tishaura O. Jones said more than 25 people accepted help and will move to shelters, tiny homes or other places.
MANHUNT UNFOLDS IN MISSOURI AFTER 2 OFFICERS SHOT, 1 KILLED
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Several people were still living in the camp and some advocates protested the decision to move them against their will. Alex Cohen, an organizer with Tent Mission STL, predicted that most of the people removed from the camp to be back on the streets soon.
Former encampment resident Anthony Rohrer, 37, said he’d also recently been attacked with an axe and taken to a hospital. He shrugged it off.
“Things happen,” he said, adding that people most watched out for each other.
“We need more understanding,” he said.