By Olivia Vidal | WVUE | January 21, 2022
NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) – Police responded to reports of an armed robbery and car theft on Thursday, January 20 in the 6200 block of Marshal Foch Street in Lakeview. The incident happened shortly after 6 p.m., a busy time of day for the popular New Orleans neighborhood that has many restaurants, bars, and shops.
That’s why it came as a surprise to residents.
According to police reports, a man was getting out of his parked truck on Marshal Foche near Harrison Avenue when he was approached by two men who said they were armed. They demanded the victim hand over his car keys. The victim complied and the two thieves drove off.
“It’s disturbing,” said longtime Lakeview resident Felix Lepine. “I know [crime] has always been in the neighborhood but when it occurs in the same block where you live, it’s even worse.”
The armed robbery took place steps away from where Lepine lives on Marshal Foch, and the incident is something that upsets him.
“I’ve spent a lot of nights here as well, I walk right back home, and to think that the same thing could happen to you or your family or whatever, is very disturbing.”
He feels the crime problem in the city as a whole has only gotten worse within the last year, and he’s not wrong.
The New Orleans Crime Commission reports a 550% increase in carjackings. So far in 2022, police report 41 carjackings, compared to 2021 with 14 carjackings, and 2020 with only seven.
“I’d like to see action being taken and not constant discussion,” said Lepine. “It’s time to do something.”
On Wednesday, January 19, at 5 p.m., a woman was carjacked at gunpoint outside her home in the Gentilly neighborhood. Residents there are traumatized by the event.
“We need to do something. Like something needs to be done now because it’s getting worse and it’s getting to the point where people don’t want to come outside,” said a resident who wanted to remain anonymous.
For Lepine, the word that comes to mind when he sees crime happening near his home is ‘disturbing’ and he feels like it has never been worse.
“They arrest people and they are released and the same thing happens again,” said Lepine. “It’s the absence of accountability that I believe to be the biggest problem. It’s very disturbing what’s happening because I think it’s the beginning of the end for a really fine city if this keeps up.”