Syracuse (WSYR-TV) -- Crime scenes are becoming all too common in Darlene Jackson's neighborhood on the Southside of Syracuse.
"On a Sunday morning at 11 o’clock, I left home to go to church. When I came back, someone had broken into my house,” said Jackson, a 16 year Southside resident.
Tired of waiting for change, Jackson joined neighbors Wednesday night, for a strategy session.
"I've been here for 40 years, and I've never seen it like this,” said Irvin Hanslip, President of the South Ave. Business Association.
Shop managers were asked to begin towing the cars of people who loiter in their parking lots after hours. Residents were asked to help form a council to meet with city leaders, law enforcement, and community organizers. A crime camera is expected to be installed in the area soon.
The biggest complaints focused on police response time, many saying their calls aren't thoroughly investigated. Neighbors were encouraged to keep a log, documenting how many calls are answered and how quickly.
"Once folks get a sense that police officers are taking some ownership of making sure complaints are being heard, it begins to change the mindset," said Walter Dixie, who hosted the neighborhood meeting.
A snapshot of one Southside intersection shows three serious crimes back-to-back:
- In July, a man is stabbed with a sword at a local bar.
- In August, another man demands the bar's cash register.
- A month later, three people are shot on the sidewalk, one is killed.
Jackson has hope the tide will turn this month, “My neighborhood is just like any other neighborhood; it can be better,” she said.