DOTHAN, Ala. (WDHN) — Some residents in District 2, known as the ‘Ford Country’ area are doing what they can to prevent the approval of a liquor store near their homes.

A sign has been placed in front of a vacant building next door to the Sandher Gas Station on Third Avenue where they will do business if approved.

“If you begin to do research whenever a liquor store is put in the neighborhood crime goes up, the robbery goes up, violent crime goes up,” Derrick Tiller said. “Why would we ever want to put a liquor store in the center of a neighborhood if it was the Highlands or Chapelwood we wouldn’t be talking about this, but because it’s a black community we’re having this discussion,” Tiller said.

Tiller, who is a resident in the “Ford Country’ area, came up with the ‘Oh No To A Liquor Store’ petition that targets the welfare of the neighborhood, keeping children safe, and crime.

Tiller started the petition on Friday and so far there are over 50 signatures online. After walking the streets, he picked up about 30 more.

“Biggest thing they are hearing is we don’t want that traffic here, we don’t want those things that come with the liquor store, and why do we need it,” He said. “There are many plazas on Ross Clark Circle, many buildings on the north side of town they can put this liquor store in.”

The applicant told WDHN off camera that people want a liquor store because they usually commute 10 to 15 minutes to buy liquor.

For those on the other side, they say they are trying to clean up District 2 which is often referred to as a troubled area by some, and most importantly restore pride to their home community.

“If you look at Grandview they are putting an NFL flag there and talking about possibly putting a YMCA,” Tiller said. “We are trying to make our area look better and by putting this store here it doesn’t go along with the efforts we are trying to do.”

There will be a public hearing regarding the liquor store Tuesday at 10 a.m. in the commission chambers at the Dothan Civic Center.