'Detroit Street Watchers' keeps an eye on neighborhood

By Shawn Ley - Reporter

DETROIT - A man who found a mountain of tires in the neighborhood near the Michigan State Fair Grounds created a unique neighborhood watch group.

Walter Gildersleeve calls his one-man neighborhood watch group "Detroit Street Watchers." 

"I'm doing what people think is crazy," said Gildersleeve. "I go through these abandoned houses, I go in the back of these yards."

Gildersleeve is from the neighborhood and he's patrolling it in his own SUV, with his own lights, signs, shirt and hat.

He is producing an online video diary of what he finds. Mainly, it's people pulling off of 8 Mile Road and Interstate 75 to use the area as their dumping ground. 

"When this community feels that no one is here with them I'm showing that I'm a part of this community," said Gildersleeve. "I'm in the community, I'm stepping up."

Gildersleeve is stepping up by stepping into abandoned homes, looking for the bodies of missing people to help some families gain closure.

"We are not the police but my job is to be a concerned citizen" said Gildersleeve. "[If] men don't stand up, [it's] going to get worse than what you see right now."

Gildersleeve's one-man organization is going to continue urging the city to pay more attention to this neighborhood.

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