Residents want better security at apartment complex

By Jace Larson - Investigative Reporter

HOUSTON - Residents of a southeast metro apartment complex say management isn't doing enough to keep them safe after several burglaries in recent months.

The most recent was Monday morning when burglars kicked in the door of Tisha Nealy's apartment, ransacked it and stole her computer, television and jewelry. She lives with her two-year-old daughter at Cedars at Ellington near I-45 and FM 1959.

"I just want someone to do something to keep us safe. I just want to be able to go to sleep and know that someone is looking out for me and doing whatever they can so my daughter and I don't have to fear for our lives when we sleep," Nealy told Local 2 Investigator Jace Larson.

She wants the management to fix the security gate at the complex entrance which residents told Local 2 has been left open for months.

"That gate hasn't functioned in the two years I've been here. We're always told they would have it fixed, something would be done. Nothing has ever been done," Nealy said.

A Houston Police Department spokesman told Local 2 there have been five burglaries reported in the complex in the past three months.

The complex manager did not return phone calls from Local 2. An agent in the leasing office would not answer questions about the gate or other security concerns.

One neighbor had the wheels stolen off his car so he installed a security camera from his second floor apartment to watch his vehicle, Nealy said.

She said the complex told him he had to take the camera down because it violated the property's rules.

"They aren't doing anything to protect us or keep us safe here," Nealy said.

Local 2 legal analyst Brian Wice says tenants may be able to break their leases by claiming the complex is in material breach of its contract by failing to provide a reasonably safe and habitable premise.

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