PORTLAND, Ore. — A Portland restaurant owner had to clean up a big mess after someone left dozens of hypodermic needles on his property, last weekend.
It happened outside Culture, a new Mediterranean style restaurant on Southeast 24th and Southeast Hawthorne Boulevard, slated to open next month.
“It was so much, all piled in the corner,” said co-owner, David Jackson. He posted a video of the wooden side deck where he found most of the needles.
“You don't know which ones are used, it was at least a couple dozen,” he said.
You might recognize Jackson by his professional name, DJ OG ONE, known best for playing music at Moda Center during Trail Blazers games. Now, he's branching out with the restaurant. While Jackson and his team proudly paint the inside, they're fighting spray painted graffiti on the outside of the building.
“We tried to get most of it off,” Jackson said. “It’s happened several times.”
Besides vandalism, Jackson said they’re dealing with human waste and bags of trash left on the property.
“Some of these things are health risks,” he said. “This is something that has to be addressed.”
Jackson assumes those responsible are homeless, or perhaps dealing with mental illness. Video from surveillance cameras shows a woman flinging the needles.
“We want people to get help but we also want people to respect those who are trying to make a living for their family,” said Jackson. “I'm quite sure we're not the only business that has dealt with this.”
Jackson filed a police report and has also reached out to the city.
“I know the city is trying their best, it's not an easy task,” he said.
At the very least, Jackson wants what's happened to him to demonstrate that the way things are right now isn't working.
“There's not one answer to the problem,” Jackson said. “But I think the more we have the conversations and press the issue, the better things will get.”