DALLAS – Neighbors in the community of Joppa are spreading alerts about a recent string of armed robberies. A 16-year-old was shot and injured during one of those robberies.
Joppa is a small, tight-knit, community. Neighbors say they have been concerned about a couple of unidentified gunmen since Sunday when word began spreading about several armed robberies.
Neighbor Claudia Fowler posted a video about the crimes on social media. She said, "I don't know who this monster, monsters, low lives, thugs who decided they wanted to come and wreak havoc in the community of Joppa. But I sure hope that you do get caught!"
Neighbors are the spreading word about the crimes after a 16-year-old South Oak Cliff High School student was heading home from a nearby Shell convenience store. They say he was walking along Linfield Drive when a couple of unidentified men attacked him. The gunmen stole the teen’s cell phone, according to the neighbors. They say the thieves fired several shots at the boy.
“People shot at him six times,” said neighbor Rodney Powell, “hit him twice."
Powell lives on Solar Lane. A man on his street was also robbed at gunpoint the same night.
"It's being kept so hush-hush,” Powell explained about notice of the crimes. “No police presence, nobody talking to you about it.
Not too far away, on Luzon Street, neighbors say a man and a woman were also robbed on Sunday. Their money and keys were stolen by the criminals. Police are also investigating a fourth robbery that happened nearby on Maryland.
Residents say, so far, they have only been able to gather a vague description of the suspects and their older-model getaway car.
Powell said, "It puts you on edge, and it puts you on edge in a bad way, because now you are worried about your protection. So, you're wondering if you have to carry protection at all times."
Neighbors in Joppa say the only way that can be vigilant, right now, is by spreading the word as best they can.
“You know we all want to feel safe in our own communities,” Fowler said. “We want to be safe where we live."
Community members say they will be keeping a close eye on one another, while praying the teenage shooting victim recovers.
Police are urging neighbors to take preventative steps and be aware of their surroundings. Anyone with information about the armed robberies and shooting can report those tips to Crime Stoppers.