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Violent Crime Disturbs South Fargo Neighborhood - Valley News Live - KVLY/KXJB - Fargo/Grand Forks

Violent Crime Disturbs South Fargo Neighborhood

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  • Violent Crime Disturbs South Fargo NeighborhoodMore>>

  • Man Robbed at Gunpoint

    Man Robbed at Gunpoint

    A driver was stopped by a man holding a gun in front of his car, threatening to shoot if he didn't stop his car. It happened just after 10 Sunday night in the 400 block of 21st Street South Fargo. Wyatt
    A driver was stopped by a man holding a gun in front of his car, threatening to shoot if he didn't stop his car.

A south Fargo neighborhood is on guard after a Moorhead man says he was robbed at gunpoint and assaulted after driving down their street, the 400 block of 21st Street South.

The incident isn't the first disturbance the neighborhood has seen in recent days, and some fear things may continue to get worse: According to statistics from the Fargo Police department, they too have noticed an increase in some violent crimes.

Resident Stephanie Smith told us she witnessed a SWAT team conducting an operation in her neighborhood just last Thursday.

"It was right across the street from us," Smith, who has lived in Fargo for 10 years, recalls. Now, she worries that neighborhood crime is getting out of control.

Smith has dogs as her form of protection, but still doesn't think that's enough. "When we were growing up, we could go to the grocery store by ourselves," she explains. "Now I won't let my daughter go out the back door without one of us. [...] It's dangerous. People are getting held up at convenience stores. You wonder what it is."

According to the latest statistics from the Fargo Police Department, strong-arm robberies are up from 23 to 28 this year, but Fargo lieutenant Joe Vettel says it may not be as bad as it seems. Vettel says overall crime rates have not shown any significant change, and that he doesn't see any particular pattern when it comes to the activity in Smith's neighborhood.

"People ask, 'Is it more dangerous?' There is a perception that it is a bad area, but the numbers don't tell us that," Vettel explains, "but people there are more aware and more diligent."

There, Smith agrees. She says she's always on the look out and says her dogs will continue to do the same.

Lieutenant Vettel says Sunday's strong-armed robbery - when a victim is pulled over randomly at gunpoint, then assaulted - is extremely rare, both here in Fargo and nationally. Police say there may be some inconsistencies in the man's report and are continuing to investigate.

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