Recent arrests not doing much to calm Uptown residents' nerves - FOX 8 WVUE New Orleans News, Weather, Sports, Social

Recent arrests not doing much to calm Uptown residents' nerves

On Tuesday, police announced the arrest of three juveniles and 43-year-old Larry Vail. (FOX 8 Photo) On Tuesday, police announced the arrest of three juveniles and 43-year-old Larry Vail. (FOX 8 Photo)
Larry Vail, 43 (Source: OPSO) Larry Vail, 43 (Source: OPSO)
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NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) -

New Orleans police lock up three juveniles and another man they say are responsible for terrorizing people Uptown. But despite the high-profile arrests, many still say it'll take a lot more for them to feel comfortable in their neighborhood.

On Monday at about 6:30 p.m., police say a man armed with a gun robbed the Circle K in the 6000 block of Magazine Street.

“This has really been the straw that's broken the camel's back as far as I'm concerned,” Uptown resident William Accousti said.

Despite living across the street from Patois, the restaurant where three masked men held up patrons on Aug. 20, Accousti said it's the robbery in daylight on busy Magazine Street that's got him most concerned.

“We're on red alert. Everybody in the neighborhood is on red alert. Everybody’s afraid to go out and walk around,” Accousti said.

On Tuesday, police announced the arrest of three juveniles and 43-year-old Larry Vail, who together are connected to 11 armed robberies in the Uptown area.

“The message is clear, you can run, but you can't hide. We're better at what we do than you are at what you do," said NOPD Chief Michael Harrison.

The group arrested isn't responsible for the Circle K robbery, the hold-up at Patois, and others documented by FOX 8, meaning those perpetrators are still on the loose.

“We're worried, we're frustrated, we know that the department is short on manpower,” Uptown resident Brooke Duncan said.

Duncan sits on the board of the Upper Hurstville Security District. He said more people are calling the private security guards when they get home, just to escort them inside, because fears are so high. Duncan believes the city needs to take note.

“It does seem like it’s time to pull out all the stops and pull in any law enforcement agency that can spare folks to patrol our streets,” Duncan said.

In the meantime, the department said it’s working overtime to get all the offenders off the streets, and keep them away.

“As we send these juveniles to jail, if they stay in jail, it’s not up to us, if they stay in jail. If we keep Larry Vail in jail and some of these other individuals, I think you're going to see a decrease in the future, I really do,” NOPD Second District Cmdr. Paul Noel said.

Noel said 2013 saw a record low for armed robberies. He said he doesn't see the string of recent incidents as a spike in crime, rather he feels things are leveling off to where they used to be.

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