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DC business owner warns of 'out of control' prices and crime after 52 restaurants shut down

One restaurant owner said he is moving his business across the river to Virginia to keep his customers and staff safe from aggressive panhandlers.

Dozens of restaurants in Washington D.C. have closed their doors amid high rent costs and surging crime, with one business owner admitting he is tired of staff and customers being threatened, robbed and carjacked.

According to the Metropolitan Washington Restaurant Association, 52 restaurants in D.C. have shuttered in 2023.

The nation's capital is grappling with an escalating crime surge, having surpassed a 20-year record-high in homicides with 261 murders as of Dec. 14, according to Metropolitan Police Department data. Robberies are also skyrocketing, increasing 69% year-to-date, while theft is up 24%.

Additionally, motor vehicle theft is up 84% and violent crime increased 39% year-over-year.

WASHINGTON WIZARDS, CAPITALS PLAN TO DEPART DC AS CRIME CRISIS INTENSIFIES; YOUNGKIN CELEBRATES MOVE

REX Management CEO Noe Landini, who recently closed his Washington, D.C. restaurant, told "Fox & Friends" Friday that marked police cruisers and ambulances have been carjacked.

"We had an American Red Cross van that was supposed to feed the homeless the other day get carjacked. I mean, it's out of control," he said.

Landini and his colleagues chose not to renew their restaurant lease, claiming it did not make sense from an investment standpoint. He also questioned city leadership and their response to crime.

"What's the long game here? Like, what is the long game for mayors in D.C. or in New York to, like, completely destroy their city and not provide the resources that we need to conduct business?" Landini asked.

DC CONTINUES EXPERIENCING SOARING CRIME RATES DESPITE COUNCIL CHAIRMAN SAYING ‘THERE IS NO CRIME CRISIS’

Instead of renewing the lease, Landini plans to take his business across the river to Virginia, citing "extremely aggressive and uncomfortable" experiences with panhandlers.

"It's a 15-minute drive, and you have a better, safer experience. Employees are safer. Customers don't have to deal with the things that they have to deal with downtown right now," he added.

Landini also claimed that the city has not recovered from the COVID-19 pandemic and police have not been able to do their job. This, in turn, has led to business owners being afraid to do their own jobs.

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