AUSTIN (KXAN) — A man is in jail accused of sexually assaulting a woman in front of a bar on East Sixth Street on Sunday morning.
According to police, a witness notified police around 10 a.m. of a woman who was sleeping on the ground and getting sexually assaulted by two men in the 200 block of East Sixth Street. When officers arrived at the scene, they were able to detain two suspects who matched the description given by the witness. One of the men, Darius Maxwell, 34, was arrested and charged with sexual assault.
The witness said he saw the two men approach the victim and one kept a lookout while the other sexually assaulted the victim, according to the arrest affidavit. When he realized what was going on, the witness said he started recording the incident and called police.
“Is downtown challenging? Yes,” said Police Chief Art Acevedo of keeping the streets safe. “Can you visit downtown and stay relatively safe? Yes. If you use common sense, good judgement and keep your wits about you.”
Chief Acevedo also said the department will be increasing the number of patrols this summer in downtown Austin.
He also responded to claims by the president of Austin’s Police Association, who said many officers do not like to work downtown and on Sixth Street because of all the “challenges.” Acevedo said the claims are not true.
“Luckily the vast majority of our officers enjoy working there, enjoy the challenge and take a lot of pride in operating a very challenging environment and doing so effectively,” he said.
Acevedo said there is a plan to attack some of the issues downtown and more information about that plan may be available within the next couple weeks.