You see it all the time, residents pulling into gated communities and someone, who may or may not belong there, follows them through the gate. One neighborhood in northwest Oklahoma City was hit by a thief and that's exactly how he got in.
“In any kind of security gate, tailgating is an issue,” said Paul Conrady with Crimeseen.
Conrady says he sees tailgating time after time, where cars enter gated areas behind other cars.
“Unfortunately people kind of drop their guard they feel secure inside the fence,” he said.
Conrady runs Crimeseen, an online community where people can posts crimes that happen to them, including one at that occurred at the Lone Oak Ridge neighborhood back in May. Surveillance video showed a pickup tailgating into the community, and once inside, the suspect stole a purse out of car.
“You've got to pay attention to who's coming in behind you, it's really that simple,” Conrady said.
Conrady said the home owners association had put in surveillance cameras at the gate to help monitor who is coming and going, something he says more and more neighborhoods are starting to do. However, he says neighbors need to go a step further and install home security cameras as well.
“If it hadn't been for an interior camera spotting the car pull up in the driveway that was victimized, we'd never known what vehicle to get the high definition footage at the gate,” he said.
Footage that he says helped police track down Christopher Harris, who is accused in a string of neighborhood burglaries.
Conrady said don't wait for the cameras to catch a criminal, though, instead stay on guard when you don't recognize a car entering behind you.
“If they do make it through the gate and you weren't able to keep them out just pull in behind them, follow them see where they are going,” he said. “Pay attention.”
The neighborhood put the cameras in back in February and said because they were in place, the crime was solved in a matter of days.