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What Weber Square merchants are doing to stay safe

Weber Square merchants are on high alert
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Posted at 5:01 PM, Feb 20, 2020
and last updated 2020-02-20 20:08:15-05

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — A rash of armed robberies continues on the Southside with no end in sight.

In the past week, a Dollar General and Metro PCS located just a few blocks from one another have been robbed by armed suspects.

This week a pawn shop in the Weber Square was hit as well. In at least two of those robberies, customers were inside the store.

Those robbers got away with more than cash. They've robbed other nearby businesses of something more important, peace of mind.

That's why Weber Square businesses are on alert.

"There's definitely been an increase of sketchy activity, just here in this plaza here," said Rebekah Lee, who cuts hair at Mr. Louie's Barber Shop in Weber Square.

Lee says Wednesday's robbery, along with the string of recent similar crimes have her concerned about coming to work.

"We're a family business, we have children coming in and out of here, day in and day out.," Lee said. "I bring my own son here, he's only five months old."

Since the first of the year, Lee says she's been more security conscious at the place, both in and out of the shop.

"Even if it's coming to work or the H-E-B right next door, just being on the lookout," said Lee. "Keeping your eyes and ears open, you know?"

At another end of Weber Square, Kary Villasana serves up shakes at FabuLicious Nutrition. She was actually inside her business when the pawn shop was robbed Wednesday, but says she had no idea anything was happening until police arrived.

"They put that yellow tape up, so I thought maybe something bad happened this time." Villasana said. "We really got scared."

While she's been at Weber Square more than two and a half years, Villasana says she's recently started feeling less safe while at her shop.

"I get nervous because I come here really early in the morning, I sometimes come with my baby," said Villasana.

So like other businesses here, Villasana has started taking extra steps for peace of mind at work.

"I've been locking the door until my first customer comes, then I open it," said Villasana.

Both businesses have security cameras, as most at Weber Square do. Both Lee and Villasana say they hope police can bring an end to the robberies soon.