Denver homeless encampment features pop-up bar with profitable prostitution tents

It’s Shangri-La for the depressed.

A decorated beer garden for homeless people that also rents out tents for prostitution has popped up in downtown Denver, according to police.

The temporary speakeasy, complete with lounge chairs, umbrellas and astroturf, has taken over the sidewalk at 23rd and Champa streets, which the city’s growing homeless population has turned into an encampment.

The tavern outside a tent.A street bar has reportedly popped up at a homeless encampment in Denver. C.B.S.

“We’re hearing that there was an open bar, alcohol sales, things like that,” Denver Police Patrol Division Chief Aaron Sanchez told CBS Colorado while inspecting the tent city hall on Monday. “We have officers investigating that.”

City officials have received “numerous complaints” about the encampment blocking the sidewalk, forcing pedestrians to walk across the street to get past the block.

One of the shops appeared to have been transformed into a speakeasy, with numerous sofas, rugs and tables.

Bottles lined up on a shelf.Police are investigating reports that alcohol is being sold to homeless people at the makeshift bar. C.B.S.
Pile of empty bottles.The salon is located at 23rd Street and Champa Street in downtown Denver.CBS

The place was filled with dozens of liquor bottles, all empty and proudly displayed on dressers and second-hand shelves when police arrived earlier this week.

There have been complaints that the street bar’s couches and surrounding tents are being rented out for prostitution, Sanchez said.

Meghan Shay, an executive with the homeless aid group Step Denver, told CBS that she herself noticed the apparent bar during one of her morning commutes.

Lounge sofa behind a tent.The tents are reportedly rented for prostitution, police said.CBS

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He said an encampment serving liquor to homeless people would only exacerbate the city’s homeless problem, citing a report stating that more than 80% of homeless people have experienced alcohol and/or drug problems over the years. throughout his life.

A 2022 report on street mortality showed that drugs and alcohol were the cause of 60% of homeless deaths, Shay said.

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