Apartment complex taking action after crime spree

By Jace Larson - Investigative Reporter

HOUSTON - A local apartment has pledged to fix broken security cameras and has hired a security guard to watch the front gate at night after several residents became crime victims recently and asked Local 2 Investigates for help.

Three residents of Camden Vanderbilt had the tires and rims stolen off their Mercedes Benz in recent months. Two of the people were victimized this past weekend. A fourth crime victim had her 14-foot utility trailer stolen Dec. 23.

"I'm very concerned," said Luz Roberts, who was one of the first people to see a white Mercedez Benz sitting on blocks of cement. "Immediately when we saw it, we tried to find the owner to see if he knew."

Mercedes Benz tires and wheels can bring a lot of money on the black market. A local dealership told Local 2 that owners can expect to pay $7,000 for new rims and tires.

"It's really frustrating and we really want something to be done about the security issues here," Julie Adams, a resident, said. It was her utility trailer that was stolen this month.

She asked the apartment complex staff to see surveillance video from complex cameras but was told not all of the cameras are functioning.

Complex spokeswoman Julie Keel told Local 2, the cameras would be repaired Tuesday.

She also said a guard will be checking residents' when they enter the complex at night. The guard will be posted seven days a week, Keel said. The guard will be in place nightly starting within the next two weeks.

No matter where viewers live, they can protect themselves with inexpensive wheel locks.

Automobile stores sell locking lug nuts which can help protect your car. They require a key to remove rims. Locking lug nuts can be purchased for as little as $25. Mercedes Benz sells them for about $95.

If you have a tip about this story or something else, email Jace Larson at jlarson@kprc.com or send him a message on Twitter. http://twitter.com/jacelarson.

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