VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) — Chris Adams says he doesn’t leave home without his camera, which proved to be helpful Monday in recording a suspected thief running away with his neighbor’s package.
Adams says he was walking around the Farrcroft area of Ridgely Manor, where he’s lived for more than a decade, when he witnessed the stranger swipe the package from a porch on Elston Lane.
“I got you recorded dude. You’re on tape,” Adams yelled at the suspect while running after him. “I already got you; calling the cops right now. You better keep running.”
In the process, the suspect dropped the stolen package, which Adams was able to return to its rightful owner. The suspect took off running.“I’m mad I couldn’t catch him because this is getting ridiculous. On a daily basis you got people not caring, taking stuff that’s not there’s that people worked hard to get.”
Home surveillance captured two similiar incidents on Feb. 20 and 22 in the afternoon hours between 12-2 p.m., according to Adams.
Package thefts, along with car break-ins and vandalism, have become concerning to longtime neighbors who used to feel safe at home. They tell WAVY.com the community has changed.
“A lot of people are passing through,” said Napoleon Lewis, who has lived in Farrcroft for 11 years. “It’s kind of a different demographic that lives over here than what used to live over here. More people used to own and now a lot more people rent.”
Lewis says intruders broke into his car five times in the past year and a half. His car was locked in all but one case, he says.
Lewis wants the Ridgely Manor Condominium Association to install more lights and a fence around the back of the property to keep unwanted visitors away.
Adams says the uptick in crime has contributed to some of his friends moving out of the neighborhood. He says he wants to help restore peace to the area before the crime gets any worse.
“I ain’t giving up. I will stand here and protect my neighborhood.”
The Virginia Beach Police Department says they’ve dealt with problems in Ridgely Manor over the past year, but crime has slowed down in the past three months.
Crime data requested by 10 On Your Side was not immediately available.
Tonya Pierce, a spokeswoman for the department, says they do not recommend chasing down suspects in criminal situations. Pierce added pictures and video do help detectives to identifying suspects.