The streets of South Ellwood Avenue had their familiar buzz Thursday: neighbors walking their dogs, professionals coming and going, and the hum of traffic. But those who live behind the locked doors lining the street say they feel differently.
"Absolutely the worst I've seen it," says Canton resident John Thompson. "People go where the money is. I guess they figure this is where the money is." Thompson has called Canton home for nearly 25 years. He moved into the neighborhood when the area was still 'up and coming,' but he says it wasn't until recently that he's felt unsafe.
"The most recent break in was two days ago. He just moved here about 2-3 weeks ago, maybe the first of the month. So this is like his 'welcome to the neighborhood,'" he says.
About a week before that, and a few doors down, he says thieves got away with jewelry and a laptop despite a blaring alarm. According to Baltimore Police, burglaries in the Southeast District are up 11 percent.
Carol Nickerson and a group of neighbors join an officer every other week on what she calls a 'cop walk.' She strolls through the alleys checking out what's going on and getting the scoop from police. She says it's up to neighbors to look out for each other.
"All your trash cans have your address on them. So if you're not picking up your trash cans you're just advertising to somebody that you're not around. It's simple things like that," Nickerson says.
The Canton Community Association is putting together a spreadsheet, marking all of the recent break-ins. They're hoping keeping an eye out and making neighbors aware puts an end to the burglaries.
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