Worship at your own risk: Some Detroiters fear home robberies

Detroiters afraid to go to church for fear of homes being robbed while they're away

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Some residents in this Detroit neighborhood are afraid their homes will be targeted by thieves if they attend church. Some residents in this Detroit neighborhood are afraid their homes will be targeted by thieves if they attend church.
DETROIT (WJBK) -

The Fargo-Fenton Playground seems peaceful enough tucked between Seven and Eight Mile near Telegraph on Detroit's west side.

The little kids really like it, and they have no problem obeying the list of park policies. The overall goal is to have a good time.

That's the one rule the roughnecks are following unfortunately, but we're talking about the kind of good time that will have you doing some hard time.

"Syringes, liquor bottles," said one resident. "Used condoms laying all over the place."

"The prostitutes from Eight Mile at night come out," another neighbor said. "They bring their kids as a cover."

"It's been a meeting place for drug dealers," said another resident.

Neighbors told us the lawlessness and shady dealings don't just stop at polluting the park. They believe the bad behavior has led to a bunch of break-ins on several blocks.

"Come home and find that their windows have been pried open," said a resident. "You don't know who's going to attack you next."

"Your hands are tied basically as a citizen. You really are at the mercy of the criminals."

"We have to defend ourselves against the criminals who want to just singly take over," said another neighbor. "People are afraid, and they're getting older, and the kids now beginning to move them away."

Things have gotten so far out of control, the criminals are just so rotten to the core, so calculated and callous, one neighbor said, "We're being targeted when we go to church."

Church on Sunday for some is no longer a staple in their routine because they say now it's come down to worshiping at your own risk.

"Come home and everything should be fine, but when you come home and everything you've worked hard for is ripped apart and then you've got to pay to repair the damage that was done to your home, it will deter you from going because you want to try to protect what you have because no one else is going to do it for you," said a resident.

"People are trying to police themselves and trying to make sure that their families are safe the best way they can. If that means that we might not have to go to church today, God understands why you're not going."

"Pray at home and hope that they can get some forgiveness that way."

People in that neighborhood care about their proprieties and neighbors, and they want their area saved.

A Detroit police spokesperson told us she will put in a request for special police attention in that area.

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