CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - Charleston's police chief says he has the manpower to patrol Upper King Street after the bars and restaurants empty out on weekends.
Some bar and restaurant owners are wondering if even more officers are needed on Upper King after a man who was sucker punched died.
"It looks like Bourbon Street on Friday and Saturday night," said David Platte who is general manager of Joe Pasta restaurant. "At two a.m. you've got hundreds of maybe, I don't know, possibly over a thousand people just all of a sudden emptied out on the street suddenly."
Last Saturday morning as the bars were closing down, police say 27 year old Clinton Seymour was sucker punched at the corner of King and Morris Streets.
Seymour's head hit the concrete.
He died after being taken off of life support.
The alleged assault happened a block and a half from Halls Chophouse.
Owner Bill Hall says restaurant and bar owners are very concerned.
Charleston's police chief says there is a heavy police presence at night on Upper King on the weekends.
Greg Mullen says as many as 10 cops patrol there and five to ten additional officers are in the area around King Street just in case.
"It's very difficult to control thousands of people. You have to manage it," Mullen said.
Mullen says management of Upper King will soon be even more difficult.
"At one time it was a pretty consolidated area there. Now it's moving down towards Spring Street, more bars and restaurants are opening in that area."
That is why the chief got the green light from city council to hire 12 new police officers who will help patrol King Street by the middle or end of May.
No doubt, that will be welcome news to restaurant and bar owners who don't want upper King to look like Bourbon Street.