Syracuse (WSYR-TV) - Neighbors in the Outer Comstock community of Syracuse plan to reclaim their neighborhood.
Residents say crime has been on the rise on the streets around Jamesville Avenue and Comstock Avenue, and they're fighting it by strengthening their community ties.
Evelyn Eyers-Marsh still has flashbacks a month after seeing a young man's face peering through the window into her living room.
"Having people try to get into my home has been very traumatic for me," said Eyers-Marsh, who lives on Diana Avenue.
She was able to identify two young men two police, and says it was a terrifying experience she can't shake.
"I've gotten really paranoid," she said. "I carry my keys in one pocket, my cell phone in the other because my keys I can press the emergency button and get attention and my cell phone I can call 911."
Nearly every other homeowner on Diana Avenue and Jean Avenue has a similar story.
"In fact, there's more houses in this area that have been broken into probably than haven't," said Eyers-Marsh.
Brenda Cuse-Malone has lived on Jean Avenue for 24 years. In just the past few years, her car has been broken into multiple times.
"The violation really disturbed me, and personal safety for ms is an issue now," said Cuse-Malone. "The fact that somebody can enter my home and compromise my personal safety is really something I'm concerned about."
Those who moved to the neighborhood recently area also targeted. Three young roommates had $6,000 worth of electronics stolen from their home two years ago. Now with an upgraded security system, they're more worried about their neighbors.
"Especially when you hear about people getting hit at like 9 o'clock when people are home," said Brendan Cook, who lives on Diana Avenue. "I mean that's the terrifying aspect is like what's going through these people's heads? What are they going to do to you?"
Now, the neighbors are forming a coalition.
They're strengthening their neighborhood watch group to increase security, and to organize events like summer picnics and block parities. The plan is to fight crime with the comfort of a strong community.
"What I'm hoping is that we can create that community that was here when we first moved here," said Evelyn Eyers-Marsh.
The Syracuse Neighborhood Watch Coordinator Tony Borelli will give a presentation, and a neighborhood police officer will be available for questions.