EVANSVILLE, Ind. (WEHT) — The issue of homelessness came before the Evansville City Council on Monday night.

It was prompted by an apparent act of kindness that led to a local businessman facing a fine for what he did on his own property to help someone.

Slice restaurant owner Eric Webber set up a tent for a young man he’s known all his life who said he needed help.  

“He came to me seeking shelter, food, water, and comfort. Not violent, but very challenged mentally. Trying to take care of him,” said Webber.

The city had notified Webber that it was against the code to set up the tent, and he would have to be fined. Webber took the tent down.

“Getting persecuted because you’re trying to help someone — even a child realizes how wrong that is.”

At Monday night’s city council meeting, another man, Thomas Stratton, brought it up, along with new metal dividers put in benches in downtown Evansville. He says the city is targeting people struggling with homelessness.

“Not succeeding in making this place welcome to everyone. E is for everyone.”

Council president Zach Heronimous heads up Aurora, the local homeless advocacy center. He says he talked to the Department of Metropolitan Development about the bench dividers.

We will continue to watch for developments.