KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A River Market resident said he is leaving the city after he had three vehicles stolen in two months.
Downtown Kansas City continues to grow, attracting both businesses and people who want to live in an urban setting. With that growth, comes crime, which is driving some people back to the suburbs.
“I am picking up and moving,” said Jesse Clay, who lives near 3rd and Delaware. “I’m loading everything in a U-Haul trailer and I am going to rent a room from a friend of mine.”
Clay has to rent a U-Haul to move, because his pick-up truck was stolen from his apartment’s secured parking lot in the River Market three weeks ago and totaled.
“They had used it to commit other crimes. It was full of stolen stuff. A scooter actually flew out of the back whenever they hit the concrete barrier on 635 and Merriam Drive and totaled another car in traffic,” said Clay, who calls his situation ridiculous.
About a month before his truck was stolen, Clay’s motorcycle was stolen, and Tuesday night, a second motorcycle was stolen from the same location.
“I had caliper locks and fork locks and they just threw it in the back of a truck, you know?”
The crime report map shows 57 incidents in the Downtown/River Market area in the past month. Thirty-six of them property crimes.
Clay said his apartment manager sends out weekly updates.
“Basically like a crime report of whose cars get broken into,” said Clay. “It is constant. You are always seeing broken glass and everything like that. They need a higher police presence because there is zero right now.”
Clay said his situation is so absurd that when he called Wednesday morning to report the third theft, police began investigating him for insurance fraud. But Clay just had liability insurance, so all were total losses.
He says the situation makes him feel, “pretty defeated honestly. I mean, you work and you pay your bills and you do your thing, and you can’t even have a vehicle? You can’t have a car, a motorcycle. You can’t have these things without somebody messing with them.”
FOX 4 reached out to Kansas City Police Department to find out how many patrols are usually in the River Market area, and if they plan on increasing patrols. They have not yet responded to our phone call.