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DPD says large gatherings along Federal Blvd. leading to increase in illegal activity

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Posted at 3:56 PM, Aug 13, 2020
and last updated 2020-08-13 17:56:02-04

DENVER — City officials on Thursday encouraged people gathering along Federal Boulevard during weekends to maintain social distancing and wear masks.

Police Commander Jeffrey Martinez said the large crowds gathering during cruises along Federal have led to an uptick of illegal activity in the area, including some instances of violence, and they may also lead to the spread of COVID-19, if social distancing precautions aren't taken.

"This is our community and we need to come together," Martinez said in a news conference Thursday, alongside councilmembers Jamie Torres and Jolon Clark.

Martinez acknowledged the tradition of the cruises along Federal but encouraged those who gather for them to be respectful of business owners and residents in the area.

A shooting about a mile east of Federal Boulevard, on West Byers Place, left nine people hurt over the weekend, though it's not known if the shooting was connected to any activity along Federal.

With the problems on Federal, "we can have disagreements, we can have arguments, things like that that can escalate," Martinez said. "We want to make sure that we're preventing that. We're going to work with our community to make sure we have the increased presence. We're asking for voluntary compliance and addressing those issues that we need to."