NORFOLK, Va. (WVEC) -- Residents in Norfolk's Ghent neighborhood are warning others about pesky porch thieves. For months neighbors say their plants, decorations, vegetables and even Christmas decorations have been ripped from their gardens and snatched from their porches.
Just a few days ago, a security camera caught a man in the act. The video shows a mysterious white van pulling up to a house in the middle of the night. A man briskly walks up the steps to the front porch and snatches a potted tree before driving off.
“It seems to be late at night in the hours of 3, 4, 5 o’ clock in the morning is when we think they are happening,” neighbor Shawn Barnes said.
Barnes has lived on W. Princess Anne Rd. for only a year and already his house has been hit numerous times.
“I mean, everybody’s had something or multiple plants stolen from their yard. It’s not even the money side of it—it’s just irritating. You come home and your plants are stolen out of your yard. Just three doors down, the guy planted a few dozen new plants and the next day half of them were gone,” he said.
Neighbors say they are doing what they can to stop the thieves. They’ve been warning other residents on the Nextdoor app, installing security cameras, adding better lighting, and even gluing their pots to the ground.
“I think that’s the only option really to keep them from walking off. We had other ones going up the steps and they disappeared, so we decided to put more out but just go ahead and take a little bit of precaution this time and try to adhere them to the concrete,” Barnes said.
Neighbors believe multiple people are involved. They’re hoping police can step up surveillance and efforts to catch the thieves to put an end to the reoccurring crime.