WEST MEMPHIS, Ark. — People who live in a West Memphis apartment complex say they’re being terrorized by teenage car thieves and vandals.
At the Riverbend Apartments in West Memphis, Arkansas, tenants are on edge after they say 10 cars were broken into overnight. Many victims contacted WREG but didn’t want their faces shown.
“I got up, walked out the door, came downstairs, and I saw ten cars broken into,” a victim said. “At this point, I’m upset. I’m hot. Nobody standing out, nobody seen nothing. So, I’m just furious.”
Car windows were busted out and, in some cases, nothing was stolen. Some tenants blame teenagers who are seen walking around late at night.
“I don’t know where their parents are How could you not know where your child is at two o’clock or three o’clock in the morning?” a tenant said. “They’re going to different complexes and different streets and they’re breaking into people’s cars. They actually run as a group, in a pack wearing ski masks.”
WREG reached out to the West Memphis Police Department to see if they’re aware of the problem and what can be done about it.
In an email, The West Memphis Police Department is aware and actively investigating the recent wave of vehicle break-ins that have occurred.
“The West Memphis Police Department has ramped up its efforts to catch those responsible,” Police Chief Robbin Campbell stated, “An investigation is actively underway. We have increased patrols and are working closely with property management to implement new safety measures, including increased security patrols and the installation of surveillance cameras in parking areas. Rest assured that identifying and apprehending those responsible is our top priority.”
Back at the Riverbend Apartments, many people who live here are demanding more security and a bigger police presence, and they want to be reimbursed by the Riverbend Apartments for their expenses.
For now, many hope parents will do a better job knowing where their kids are at night, or they say a curfew is needed to help reduce crime as people living here pray for answers.
The West Memphis Police Department reminds residents to be vigilant, remove valuables from their vehicles, lock the doors, and practice their 9 p.m. routine to help prevent these crimes from happening. Call the WMPD at (870) 732-7555 if you see suspicious activity.
West Memphis Mayor Marco McClendon is scheduled to be on WREG’s Live at 9 Monday morning to discuss juvenile crime and other issues.