UPDATE: Shooting near popular Chattanooga bar raises safety concerns, Republic Parking responds
A spokesperson for Coyote Jacks says it can't control what happens in the parking lot, because it's owned by Republic Parking.
UPDATE: Republic Parking responded to Channel 3 Tuesday about Sunday's shooting in one of their parking lots on Cowart Street. We reached out to them earlier this week to ask if plans are in the works to improve safety in the parking lot.
The company said they are concerned and investigating.
"We are concerned about the incidents that arise on, or near, our parking lot due to its proximity to a late night business. We are investigating the incident and are meeting with local law enforcement and business owners in an effort to address the root cause."
Channel 3 will keep you updated as we learn more.
PREVIOUS STORY: Police are still searching for the suspect or suspects in a shooting that injured five people over the weekend.
It happened in the parking lot in front of the popular Southside bar Coyote Jacks, where there have been multiple shootings in the past year.
All of the victims are expected to be okay.
The bar says it can't control what happens in the parking lot, because it's owned by Republic Parking.
Police tell Channel 3, they can't force anyone to leave either without a legal reason.
So, we wanted to know if anything can be done to prevent a fourth shooting from happening here.
A Chattanooga officer patrols the streets surrounding Coyote Jacks. He says he's looking at the area and what can be done to make it safer, after shots rang out in a nearby parking lot sending five people to the hospital Sunday morning.
Police say there were two officers just blocks away when the shooting happened.
Sunday's shooting adds to a list of crime in the area.
Last December, a man was shot and killed after leaving the bar.
Last May, a man fired shots about 60 feet from the bar after police say he was upset he was kicked out.
The parking lot is poorly lit and surrounded by trees.
Police say there are also no city cameras in the area.
Coyote Jacks spokesman Daniel Weaver tells Channel 3, the parking lot invites trouble. However, since they don't own it, there's nothing they can legally do about it.
"We can't go past that sidewalk. Once we go past that sidewalk, we are liable. That was told to us by our insurance. That was told to us by the police sergeant," says Weaver.
Officers say they can't kick people off the property either unless they have a legal reason.
Channel 3 called Republic Parking and went to its offices in downtown. We wanted to ask if plans are in the works to improve safety in the parking lot. We left multiple messages, but the company never responded.
We asked to speak with Mayor Andy Berke about the city's response and what can be done. Our request for an interview was denied, citing an ongoing investigation.
We also attempted to speak with the owners of Coyote Jacks. One of the listed owners is Ronnie Berke, the mayor's uncle.
We stopped by his office, but were told he had "packed schedule" and was not available.
"Another nuisance attack over here in this parking lot that Republic Parking refuses to help decrease,” says Weaver.
Chattanooga police tell Channel 3, it is not the department's responsibility to provide security for Coyote Jacks or any private business.
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