Watchful Neighbors Help Police Catch TV Thieves

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(Memphis) Four teenagers were arrested Saturday after watchful neighbors alerted police to a burglary in progress.

On Saturday at about 5:30p.m., Charles Smith and his wife saw six teenagers kicking in a door to their neighbor’s house across the street.

The homeowner, Mary Flanigan, was on her way home when the Smiths called her about it.

“This little section right through here, everybody owns their home, and we just kind of all stick together,” said Mary Flanigan, the victim.

The 1500 block of Russwood Drive is home to several elderly residents who have lived there for close to half a century.

Charles Smith saw one boy walking away slowly and then picking up the pace as soon as he turned the corner. He did not see anyone else exit with any TVs.

“I would have followed him around, but I’m not driving right now,” Smith said, referring to an injured leg.

Police said the burglars stole four flat-screen television sets from Flanigan’s home. After searching the area, they found six teenagers a few blocks away at Westover and Wells Station, rolling a trash bin down the street.

Two of them started running, and the other four were arrested. All four are 17 years old and are charged with aggravated burglary.

Police found one of Flanigan’s TVs in that trash bin, and they also found one of her remotes in a suspect’s pocket.

“Cops were fantastic. You couldn’t have asked for any better,” Flanigan said.

By Sunday, she had two of the TVs returned to her.

Flanigan has one message for the boys who broke in: “Just behave yourself. Get a job. Go to church.”

Both Flanigan and the Smiths said people in more neighborhoods should watch out for each other to prevent crime like this.