Riverina Gums Retirement Village members say string of crimes left them in danger | The Daily Advertiser

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Members of a Wagga retirement community are calling for action after a series of serious crimes left them vulnerable and in danger. Retirees at Riverina Gums Retirement Village have suffered a number of crimes in recent months and they say management is not doing enough to keep them safe. The unenclosed village of Glenfield Park, which includes individual units easily accessible to the public, has been the scene of several break-ins and a sexual assault. Jean Busch is one of the last victims of the village. In early April, her house was broken into while she was sleeping and a number of items were stolen. Ms Busch has lived at the Riverina Gums Retirement Village for more than 20 years and the crime wave has led her to consider leaving her longtime home. IN OTHER NEWS: Her family are frustrated by what they see as inaction by the village leadership. Ms Busch’s son, Heath Busch, had contacted RetireAustralia, the owners of Riverina Gums, after several of his mother’s neighbors were robbed. He asked for increased security, but before any action was taken, his fears were realized and his mother’s house was broken into on April 2. [that is affected by crime]”, management told him. “I said, ‘Well, mate, I don’t care about the others, I’m trying to settle this one.'” The incident left Ms Busch scared, but she feels like she has nowhere to go.” I got up [the next morning] thinking I should get out of here,” she said. “And then I found out there had been burglaries in all the other [retirement villages] too.” Ms Busch’s neighbor Ray Holding alerted her to the break-in after seeing a torch shining through her window. He too was a victim of crime this year, after thieves stole his car. Mr. Holding said the worst thing was that thieves entered his room, right next to his bed, and took his things. At this point, he said he was no longer afraid because crime has become such a common occurrence in Riverina Gums. I think,” he said. “It was an awful feeling.” A RetireAustralia spokesperson said they had engaged security overnight and installed CCTV in the village, along with other improvements in recent months. A number of residents have written letters to the Daily Advertiser outlining their concerns – some have been victims of crime, others fear they may be next. A woman moved to Riverina Gums in August 2021 “waiting for a safe environment”. Her unit was broken into in December and she was “disappointed with the level of security” at the village. Another resident became “worried” for her safety after her unit was “overrun”. Mr Busch said that he was told by management that there was “no magic bullet” to keep the community safe. But he believes more can and should be done. The ability to access the village at night is a major issue , he said. “We want someone here from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m.,” he said. “There needs to be security cameras and someone monitoring the cameras. It’s the closet of a miracle solution that you’re going to have.” In the meantime, life in the village is no longer the same for Mrs. Busch. “Of course, you are [worried] and you doubt yourself all the time,” she said. “We’re very vulnerable.” Our journalists work hard to provide local, up-to-date information to the community. Here’s how you can continue to access our content of confidence :

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