SPOKANE, Wash. - Business owners in downtown Spokane say they're fed up with crime and the damages they now have to pay because of it.
One business owner said she's been operating in downtown Spokane for years and she's never seen crime this bad in her area. Now, she may be forced to shut down if nothing is done.
"We have had nearly $20,000 in damage in the last year with graffiti, broken windows, repainting buildings," she said.
On a daily basis, the owner of one antique business in downtown Spokane has had to pick up needles, human waste, and vomit right outside her door.
"We found a disassembled gun in our back patio yard," she said.
Out of fear of retribution, she wants to remain anonymous. But after multiple rocks being thrown at her store...
"I spent the night here to protect my business," she said.
And with no solution, she said now is the time to speak up.
"I'm not the only business. Most are small businesses, our budgets are very small and so financially we cannot stay in business in this environment," she said.
Owning a small business in downtown Spokane for 25 years, she never had these many issues... until recently.
"The last couple of years... It's escalated immensely," she said. "Lots of drug paraphernalia, human waste, needles, broken windows, graffiti, garbage."
As you can imagine, that doesn't make for a welcoming entry.
"Our business is down considerably," she said.
Looking for solutions, she's called Crime Check, emailed city council members, and the mayor.
"Attempts to get help from city officials have fallen on deaf ears," she said.
She says if nothing changes...
"I will be forced to close. I can't run a business like this," she said.
On top of the 20 grand, she's also being billed for false alarms, when the police show up and don't find any criminal activity.
"A couple of occasions there isn't any visible damage, on one case we saw the damage the next day," she said.
That's hundreds of dollars, and appealing the fine is another $25, money that keeps piling up.
"It makes me feel victimized first by the vandals or criminals and secondly by the city I'm trying to do business in," she said.
Nonstop Local spoke to a security expert who said certain types of alarms can be triggered by anything from vibration to a high pitch noise.
And if police are called out, and don't find anything or anyone, a fine is issued, which is protocol.
Spokane police confirmed they've responded to two alarm calls at that location in the last two months. One was a false alarm, and the other, a rock was thrown through a window. 
Police were also called out for a malicious mischief report here for another broken window. 
No arrests have been made in either, especially as incidents like these happen so fast and with a shortage of officers, it's tough to follow up.

"Spokane is a beautiful, beautiful city and to see it destroyed is really heartbreaking," she said.

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