Neighborhood hoping to catch thieves after latest crime caught on camera

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Residents in a small neighborhood in southeast Houston feel like they are crime victims all too often.

Tuesday night, they told ABC13 about numerous car break-in and thefts. Monday night was the tipping point.

"I think it's ridiculous," said Gustavo Robles.

For the second time in a few weeks, his van was stolen right out of his driveway. Home security cameras recorded the thieves. In just minutes, they pull up, break in and then drive the van away.

One crook, who they've named the "Bigfoot bandit," was wearing a tank top, over-sized shoes and has tattoos on his arm. Another thief was wearing gloves and a cap.

The thieves also tried to break into his work van.

"We're hard workers. We work for everything we have and for someone to come steal it in five minutes, it's frustrating," said Marisol Robles, Gustavo's wife.

It's a frustration that continues to spread in the small subdivision on Wald and S. Shaver. Residents feel they've done their part to secure their property. Many homes have cameras. They are pressuring their homeowners association to reinstate private patrols and Tuesday they asked Houston police for help.

"A police officer driving through might deter the activity going on," homeowner Mike Jimenez said.

Police did recover Robles' van as ABC13 was there. It was abandoned about a mile and a half away, but his tools were gone along with any sense of security.

"We don't feel secure. We're good citizens. We pay our taxes and we work hard and it seems the criminals are winning," added Marisol Robles.

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