San Antonio Library responds to safety concerns following knife attack

Crime wave affecting San Antonio library

Library officials have responded to a knife attack Tuesday morning at San Antonio's Central Library that left a man with critical injuries.

The incident is one of many calls for help from the downtown resource center.

In the last 180 days, San Antonio Police have been called to the library 265 times.

The calls include disturbances, fights, drug and alcohol offenses and calls for suspicious people.

A library spokesman provided the following statement outlining their response to the attack and its aftermath.

"Central Library has security measures in place that include security personnel onsite at all times. In addition, all Library staff are trained to respond to suspicious behavior swiftly and promptly, as they did yesterday. Our in-house security attended to the incident in less than one minute, and SAPD and EMS arrived within a few minutes. While this incident is unfortunate, our libraries continue to be safe spaces for our community. We appreciate all who responded swiftly and professionally, including SAPD and EMS.

The safety and security of our customers and staff is our number one priority. Library Administration has reviewed yesterday's incident with the San Antonio Police Department and is exploring all options for further improvement to security and safety at the Central Library.  In addition, the Library and SAPD are working together to expedite the implementation of previously planned security enhancements."  

Several library patrons said while the stabbing is scary, being aware of the potential for danger is a good way to be safe in any public place, at any time.  

Police said the Tuesday assault happened on the fifth floor when two men argued over access to an electrical outlet.

Police said some of the homeless people who frequent the library use the facility to recharge their electronics and take refuge from the streets.

The man accused in the attack remains jailed under a 30-thousand dollar bond.  Jesse Paez, 29,  is charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.

Police have yet to release the name of the man who was critically injured.

© 2017 KENS-TV


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