Thieves rob same woman three times - KMOV.com

Thieves rob same woman three times

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(KMOV.com) – Thieves have targeted a north St. Louis multiple times, stealing her license plates and the metal gate to her fence, and now she can’t sleep at night.

“I’m held hostage in my own neighborhood,” said Paula Culton of Hamilton Heights. “I have to leave and do whatever I have to do and be in my house before dark.”

But Culton isn’t the only one. A relative of hers came to cut the grass of an abandoned house next door, but when he came back, his truck was stolen.

“All of a sudden, he hears his truck start, turns around and sees a guy in his truck,” Culton said. “And another one on the other side jumps in and they drive off.”

Culton says she senses the situation is growing worse in her part of the city, but says she’s not ready to leave.

“This is what’s hard for me. I don’t want to leave the city. I’ve lived in the city all my life and I don’t want to live in the country,” she said. “I want to stay in the city, but how can I stay in the city if I don’t feel safe?”

Alderman Jeffrey Boyd heard Culton’s complaints and says he’s had a struggle trying to turn the area around.

“Hope inspires us and gives us a reason to move on,” Boyd said. “If you don’t have hope and all you think about is despair, it’s depressing and (you) just don’t care.”

Boyd says the city will be coming to Culton’s block to clean up, not just the abandoned lot, but all the vacant properties on her block.

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