East Oakland residents band together for more security cameras to help thwart crime – KTVU FOX 2 San Francisco

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As crime continues to be a problem in the Bay Area, an East Oakland neighborhood has taken matters into its own hands, raising money for families who need security cameras.

The community-led effort is spearheaded by the Maxwell Park Neighborhood Action Team.

“The little pieces that are within our control. We’re trying to take action on and we’re trying to push the city towards making Oakland safer,” said Nathan Greene, a volunteer with the Neighborhood Action Team.

It was a team developed to work with city leaders to curb crime and address neighborhood issues involving safety.

The team’s work went into high gear after the death of beloved neighbor and friend, 60-year-old David Schneider.

In June 2023, Schneider was senselessly shot and killed while trimming trees in his front yard. Neighbors came to his aid as he was dying.

They also gathered security footage for investigators, but they could have used more.

At the time, Oakland police believed the shooting may have been an attempted robbery. The community is still without answers in his death.

“It just really struck the whole community,” said Greene. “It activated us. We felt upset and scared and so we all came together to try and think about how we could make this community safer.”

Oakland police are overwhelmed and overburdened, so Greene said he took notice of his neighboring community, Melrose, which has an active neighborhood council.

He said the Maxwell Park Neighborhood Action Team started working on problems like traffic improvement, lighting up the dark streets, and adding cameras to deter criminals.

“We’re worried that these crimes are going to be committed and nobody will be held accountable for the actions,” Greene said.

Greene recently launched a GoFundMe to raise money for families who can’t afford to buy a camera. in the neighborhood.

“We need cameras that face the street so that if a car is being used in a crime elsewhere we can maybe help law enforcement,” he said.

Diane Cheatum Allen said she has lived in the neighborhood for 45 years.

“We do look out for each other, and we have for a long time,” she said.

She has a camera on her house, but she said she’s happy to hear more families will have access to them.

“Cameras would allow us to know what is going on,” she said.

Although Oakland’s latest data shows the overall crime rates are down over last year in the Maxwell Park area, home robberies are up 300% in parts of the neighborhood.

This community is focused on solving these crimes together by monitoring the streets.

“We’ve identified several families who are interested in getting a camera but couldn’t otherwise afford it,” Greene said.

The Neighborhood Action Team has raised about $1,300, and they will continue to raise money to serve as many families as possible.

Meanwhile, Oakland police were unable to provide any updates on the fatal shooting of Schneider.

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