SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — Another spike in crime targeting the Asian community in South Sacramento has people living and working there taking bold measures.
Robberies and home invasions in the Meadowview, Fruitridge, and Pocket neighborhoods have gone up in recent months, and some people are now arming themselves for protection.
“Like the laws of Texas, if you arm yourself, you can protect yourself. Hopefully, we don’t use it, but it’s there for protection,” said resident Kent Tran.
Earlier in October, surveillance video captured disturbing moments when two South Sacramento residents, who are Asian, were robbed at gunpoint outside their home near the Elk Grove-Florin Road corridor.
“Hearing that there’s an uptick in crime, I’m really afraid for my family,” said Tran.
Tran has lived in south Sacramento his whole life, and now he fears for his life.
“I’m very alarmed, me myself I’ve actually armed myself, I have a surveillance system, I’ve upped my security system, glass-break sensors, secured my doors,” he said.
Tran is among many in the community who have acquired weapons to protect themselves. The manager of a grocery store on Stockton Boulevard says they too have armed themselves with stun guns and have nightly security.
“Part of the issue is the language barrier and not having the right tools to contact Police,” said Sgt Bryce Heinlein.
Police say robberies, carjackings, and home invasions are rising by 25 percent in the Meadowview neighborhood, and by 8 percent in the Fruitridge and Pocket area.
They add there’s been a significant decrease in crimes against Asians in Oak Park where police have focused resources.
“Some of those potential suspects may be shifting to other areas of the city, based on the efforts we’ve committed to that neighborhood,” said Heinlein.
The crimes are happening mainly in residential areas on often poorly lit streets.
“They’re coming home and being targeted as they’re getting out of their cars, being approached from behind normally, and the suspects are armed,” said Heinlein.
The police department is holding a community meeting Wednesday night from 6:30 to 9 p.m. at their headquarters in south Sacramento. They’re encouraging the public to attend as they discuss crime prevention measures and reporting tools. The department will also be allocating more officers to those neighborhoods.
Meanwhile, the Asian community remains on edge, doing what they can to stay vigilant.
“I know with the holiday season more and more will happen, but I’m just hoping that people stay diligent, and work with police to catch these guys and get them off our streets,” said Tran.