Concerned residents have formed a vigilante group to tackle growing crime in their area after a spate of violent attacks.
Nearly 400 locals have formed the group ‘We Stand Determined’ to report any dangers the Birmingham community may have faced.
The group was put together on Facebook three weeks ago after an unsuccessful petition to get more police in the area.
Organisers Wayne, Tracy and Michael founded the group after discovering a friend had been attacked in his home by thieves armed with hammers.
They now organise twice-weekly patrols across the city.
The group insists it is non-violent and seeks to work in partnership with the police while acting as a new line of defence for the community.
Solihull-based college lecturer Wayne, 47, who does not wish to reveal his surname over fears for his safety, said: "The way our group started, and the reaction we’ve had, has showed us how much local communities need groups like us to fill in the gaps the authorities simply don’t have the funding for.
"There has been a recent spate of crime in Birmingham recently and Solihull in particular has fallen victim to an increase of just under 1,500 more cases so far this year.
"People needed someone to turn to, someone who will listen and visit them in their home if a constituent is fearful for their own safety.
"We’re vigilantes, but we’re vigilantes with a twist, working within the law and not against it.
"Our group is a central place for the local community to come together to log crimes, comment and help stop crime in the area."
Birmingham has recently been blighted by a wave of stabbings, shootings and murders.
Also plaguing the city are ‘Corsa Cannibals’ known for stripping down Vauxhall Corsas to sell the parts on.
Tracy said We Stand Determined is not against West Midlands Police as they understand the force can only do what they can with the funding they are given.
But the group say this doesn’t solve the problem of reduced Bobbies on the beat.
We Stand Determined says it has big plans to generate a totally new level of support in the area by organising buddy systems for the elderly and defence classes for anyone who feels they need to be able to protect themselves.
It soon hopes to grow bigger and have representatives based in every area of the country so Wayne, Tracy and Michael can help everyone sleep a little easier.
Tracy, 48, said: "We stress to our members that if they see something, they should notify the police first.
"We would like to join up with the police, but we want to be able to make our own decisions on where the help is really needed, and not where the police tell us to be."
Wayne added: "We hope to gather funding to support out future objectives, at the moment we are totally self-funded.
"I just want to make a big difference to the area, and help anyone, anywhere, who needs it. Crime here is getting out of hand.
"We’re so proud of our community, for standing up to what we believe is an ongoing issue that’s yet to have a solution."
A spokesman for West Midlands Police said officers were aware of multiple groups but advised members to join police-approved Streetwatch programmes instead.
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