Syracuse (WSYR-TV) -- Neighbors in Skunk City aren’t waiting for Syracuse Police to install crime cameras any longer. The cameras were supposed to go up six months ago, but police say there’s still a holdup.
Homeowners are now taking neighborhood surveillance into their own hands.
Dennis Schwald, Sr. – who’s installed surveillance cameras on his home – says it’s the only way he can deter crime and continue living in the home he loves.
Schwald has lived on Hartson Street in Syracuse for 70 years – his entire life.
“When I was a kid in this area you could leave things out, the garage was open all night long. My father even left the car in the driveway with the keys in it,” Schwald continued.
Now, crime has taken over his neighborhood. He says he even awoke to a man with a knife on his roof.
“It's kind of scary to be woken up in the night, you don't expect somebody on your roof,” he said.
Now, eight cameras installed on his home give him complete coverage of what’s going on in his neighborhood and all around his home.
Schwald's neighbor Bob Korzuch installed the cameras and says he'll install anyone else's surveillance system in Skunk City for free.
“Instead of people hiding in their houses, it's time for them to be able to take back their neighborhood,” Korzuch said.
He's trying to raise $25,000 to purchase 50 camera systems - a total of 450 cameras to give to neighbors throughout Skunk City. He would like to create an interconnected web of videos that can be viewed by a neighborhood watch group remotely - day or night.
If anything's caught on camera, the footage can be sent directly to the police. But Schwald hopes it doesn't come to that.