NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) - Members of a New Orleans family became the latest victims of crime as they stood in their driveway Wednesday night.
It happened in the 9300 block of Palm Street, where an armed man approached them and forced them inside of their home, according to a friend of the victims.
"All of a sudden there was a man in their face with a gun demanding that they kneel down. She was pleading with him and kept telling him they had no money," said the friend, who did not want to be identified.
Inside the house, the robber forced all of the victims to the floor, except for one who was forced to help him search the home for money. After not finding any, the gunman fled the house with a gold chain.
The friend of the victims said they're all fed up with New Orleans crime and can't understand why city leaders can't do more to reduce it.
"How come they haven't figured it out? If you are a leader, you have to lead. We depend on you all to figure it out. Help us," said the friend as she cried.
Another similar robbery happened less that a five-minute drive away at 11:30 p.m. in the 8300 block of Oleander Street. Police said the victim and a friend were sitting on the steps of a home when a man approached and demanded their money. He fled with two purses, one of which contained $120.00 and a cell phone.
The owner and instructor of the Self Defense Mushin Training Center, Myron Gaudet, said people need to always be aware of their surroundings. Gaudet said you should always have in mind a plan on how you would react in a dangerous situation.
"You have to learn how to think before it happens. You have to be able to recognize changes in the environment as they're happening. You have to be able to quickly assess what's going on," Gaudet said.
He said if the person wants your property, turn it over. But if they mean to hurt you or someone else, fight as hard as you can and always scream and make a lot of noise to alert others nearby.
It's a new reality for many people that has left them feeling helpless in New Orleans.
"Where can we move? There is no place in this city you can move and be safe," said the friend of Palm Street victims.