‘No one deserves this’ Residents fear safety
GANG fights and vandalism makes for an average night on Randwick St, Berserker, according to a lifelong resident who just wants her grandchild to visit safely.
Since government housing was established in the street five years ago, she’s had to install security cameras, purchase extra locks and take more noticeable precautions.
The precautions cannot be mentioned as they would identify her.
The Morning Bulletin has withheld the names of residents who fear speaking out will put them in danger.
“I feel like I’m a prisoner in my own home,” she said.
“If I try to get out and sell my house I’d get nothing.”
The sounds of fights and the smashing of property wakes her up most nights as she lays in bed hoping they don’t take their frustrations out on neighbouring properties.
“The gangs come out here and they fight against each other,” she said.
Police arrive but are unable to press charges and the trend continues, according to the woman.
Watching the street become a meeting point for criminals is difficult to witness. The woman not only raised her four children in that house, it is where she herself was raised.
She’s taken her complaint to the Department of Housing and Public Works but is yet to see any action taken.
“Housing don’t do their job,” she said.
“We just want to see something done.”
A total of 37 crimes have been committed in the street since October 2017, according to the Queensland Police Service Online Crime Map.
Randwick St accounts for the second most amount of assault, robbery, unlawful entry, property damage and tresspass than any other residential street in Berserker.
She used to babysit her grandchildren regularly but she can’t anymore because her family fear it’s too dangerous.
One of the last times they visited, a man in the street used a samurai sword and nunchucks to destroy a car at a neighbouring property.
Another time, she had to run into the street and grab the children off their bikes as a man with a knife wandered the street.
A Department of Housing and Public Works spokeswoman said dangerous behaviour would not be tolerated but failed to address Randwick St concerns.
“Like any responsible landlord, the Department conducts regular inspections of properties but will investigate sooner if complaints are made about an address,” she said.
“There is zero tolerance for criminal behaviour and illegal activity and there are strong behaviour management policies in place to ensure tenants meet their obligations.”
The Randwick St grandmother isn’t the only one scared to live in her own home, just down the street an elderly widower and his carer are spending thousands to keep him safe.
“I’ve never, ever known Rocky to be this bad,” the carer said.
She is called to the property in the early hours of the morning multiple times throughout the week by neighbours scared for the elderly man’s safety.
“They’ve had enough – no one deserves this,” she said.
“You get sick of calling police. I’ll fight back - the police aren’t going to do something.”
The elderly man’s house has been vandalised and his property has been stolen on several occasions.
“He lives behind bolted and locked doors 24/7 now,” she said.
“This man is too frightened to go out in his yard after a certain time.”
The last time she received a call to say he’d been targeted, she arrived to find him cowering behind furniture in his home.
They’ve spent the past seven months trying to make his property safe but are coming to a breaking point.
“At what point is this going to stop?
“At what point are the housing department going to say ‘we’ve got to do something’.”
The elderly man spends his days inside his locked apartment behind a locked fence too scared to answer the gate.
Angry residents want the government to act so they can live safely in their homes.