Austin, Texas – Neighbors on Tuffit Lane in North Austin live in a constant state of fear after a series of shootings.
Resident Joe Ayres says the first shooting happened about a year ago, but says the shootings have increased since then. He says there were four shootings from April 20 to May 1. More shots are fired each time.
Surveillance video captured from his home shows lightning coming from a car.
“It’s really scary to come home and think, it’s like, ‘go to sleep’, five minutes of sleep, ‘pow pow pow pow pow’, wake up, I can’t go back to sleep,” Ayres said. “You lose sleep, you’re scared, and people’s homes and cars are destroyed.”
He says that no one has been injured to his knowledge and that one person has already moved out of a house full of bullets.
Neighbors believe the suspects are targeting a specific house, but also other houses and cars and also being shot. The police respond, but the neighbors want more.
“I would like more police presence,” Ayres said.
“I think just having any kind of presence here in the neighborhood would go a long way,” said resident Michael Garza. “It was really disheartening to hear that you clearly see a repeat here, and we kind of feel like it’s going to take something even worse for anything to really change.”
Garza has a young family and says the shootings are affecting everyday life.
“We really need to change what we do every day. Basically, once it starts getting a little dark outside, my wife always makes it hard for me to go, do things in the garage or be at the front of the house, because we don’t know if tonight is the night it’s going to happen,” he said.
“I’ve had neighbors tell me they talk to their significant other, you know, and they’re like, ‘Hey, this is going to happen tonight,’ and it’s like, ‘oh my god,’ or the neighbor comes out and says, ‘hey, I’m It’s been two days since the last shooting, ‘that’s not a conversation you should be having with your neighbor. ‘We’ve done it two more days. Let’s try a third day,'” Ayres said.
Austin Police confirmed they are investigating multiple shots fired in Tuffit Lane.
They say in a statement:
“These incidents are still being investigated. In order to protect the integrity of the investigation, we have no additional information to provide at this time. If anyone in possession of information or video of the incident, please submit an anonymous report via the Capital Area Crime Stoppers Program by visiting austincrimestoppers.org or by calling 512-472-8477.
“Also, please report any criminal activity to 9-1-1 or 3-1-1 and ireportaustin.com for non-emergencies.”
In response to the push for patrols, they say this:
“APD officers constantly patrol areas and regions of the city proactively; we do not disclose areas of deployment due to operational security. Our officers work hard every day to provide a safe environment for the community we serve and protect.”