Posted on August 10, 2005

Residents, Officials Trade Frustrations

Sarah Burge, Press-Enterprise (Riverside, Cal.), Aug. 9

RIVERSIDE — As city officials, police and more than 100 community members gathered at an Eastside restaurant Monday night to discuss the recent spate of gang violence, someone was in the parking lot slashing tires.

Susan Medina, owner of Zacatecas Restaurant on University Avenue, hosted the community meeting to discuss the shootings that have terrorized the Eastside this summer. The Eastside Think Tank, a grass-roots community organization, planned the event.

Medina said two cars’ tires were slashed in her parking lot, and she had received an anonymous call earlier in the day telling her to cancel the event.

“They said this is not neutral ground,” Medina said.

Over the past few months, at least a dozen people, not all of them gang members, have been shot in suspected black vs. Latino gang violence. On Saturday, four people were shot in two incidents.

A Nigerian man visiting from Oklahoma was in critical condition after he was shot without provocation across the street from the restaurant, police said.