Armed Portland man scares off would-be thief, caught on surveillance video

Armed Portland man scares off would-be thief, caught on surveillance video

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - Sunday is supposed to be a day of rest, but James Smith was busy this Sunday morning protecting his property in Portland.

“I got up, got my normal coffee as usual," Smith said. "I was sitting around in my boxers and I noticed this guy was trying to get into my truck.”

Smith grabbed his gun and ran outside.

“[I] came out with my firearm and I basically told him, ‘Get away from my truck, don’t let me catch him on my block again. Find something better to do,'” he said.

Home surveillance video shows the man running away empty-handed. However, Smith said break-ins happen much too often on Portland Avenue.

“Every night we have people walking up and down the streets trying doors,” Smith said.

This is not the first time he’s busted a would-be thief. In August, his surveillance camera captured Smith confronting another person trying to break into his truck. Another clip from January shows an unknown person sitting inside his neighbor’s car.

Several surveillance cameras are set up outside of James Smith's Portland home.
Several surveillance cameras are set up outside of James Smith's Portland home. (Source: WAVE 3 News)

“It’s not just stealing," Smith said. "We’ve got so much violence down here, it’s just nobody wants to live here anymore.”

Smith lives on Portland Avenue across the street from the Family Health Center. He told WAVE 3 News drugs run rampant in the neighborhood and he’d like to see a greater police presence from the Louisville Metro Police Department.

“I don’t want to have to deal with it," he said. "I mean, because the first one that pulls a knife or a gun on me, I’m going to have to put 'em down.”

Smith is also calling on his neighbors to take a stand and take back the Portland neighborhood.

“I mean, I can’t be the only one that’s mad about this," he said. "I can’t be the only one down here doing anything. We all need to step it up. If not, we’re going to lose our neighborhood.”

WAVE 3 News reached out to District 5 Metro Councilwoman Donna Purvis, who told said she’s constantly working with LMPD to address crime in her district. She also commended the neighborhood watch programs in her district.

Purvis said if anyone has problems, not just with a crime, call her office at (502) 574-1105.

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