Usually, when someone says they put security cameras up all around their house, they might seem a bit paranoid, especially when their house in a nice neighborhood where everybody knows everybody and nothing bad ever seems to happen. But often, the footage from those cameras proves just how scary a place the world can be. After reading these stories from Reddit, anyone with a security camera may spend some time looking over footage to see what they might have missed—while the people without cameras will probably be purchasing some in the very near future.
1. Side Chicks
When I was a poor college student my wealthy cousin and his wife went on vacation and offered to let me house sit to give me a break from my three slovenly roommates. They live a few towns over in a very nice house with a huge front lawn and a fancy, tall iron fence with double gates. The fence and gates are about 11 feet high. You have to have a remote to open the gates.
That first night I slept so well! I breakfasted like a king and then drove to school. I got back around five, made a supper fit for a king, and settled down to write an Econ paper. My cousin has a warning system for when someone driving turns off the road and comes up to the gate. There's a chiming sound and you can look at screens in a couple of different rooms to see who it is so that you can buzz them in.
I was deep into my paper when I heard the chime. I was confused at first and check my phone before I realized what it was. I looked from the sofa and could see a movement on the security screen. I stood up and got closer and had a clear view of two women getting out of a white car. One tried to squeeze between two bars of the gate—impossible—and then the other woman tried to boost her over the top of the gate—hilarious.
The top one fell and even from the house I could hear swearing. I was about to press the intercom button and ask what the heck was their problem but I was chuckling at their antics and just watched silently. They peered at the house intently from between the bars like a couple of jailbirds for a while. The skinnier one actually stripped down to her bra and panties and tried to squeeze through the bars again. No dice. Butt and bosoms were not allowing that to happen. More swearing.
Then, as the skinny one got dressed again, the bigger one went back to her trunk and got out a tire iron. As soon as she started with the hinges of the gate I was calling 9-1-1. The authorities took too long and the women left. I showed the officers the video but they couldn't get a license plate number. When my cousin and his wife returned the next week I told them what happened and we watched the tape. He said that he had no idea who the women were but his wife looked furious. I packed up, thanked them for my "vacation" and left.
She divorced him that summer.
2. That Dog Has Tricks
When I lived with my ex, we had a few security cameras and they would send you alerts when there was motion detected. I was at work and got an alert that there was motion in the living room and I figured it was my ex coming home early, but I checked it anyway. Instead, I saw my dog standing in the middle of the living room, staring at the wall. He stood there for a minute and then got on the sofa to sleep.
Two things were terrifyingly off about that. 1) My dog was a puppy at the time and was crated when home alone. The crate is made of solid wood, metal grates and has thick and heavy eye/hook latches, so there's no conceivable way he could have opened the door. 2) He was kept in the office, which is located off the hall and we kept the door separating the living room from the hall closed during the day to keep the room cooler for him.
I looked back at the recording because I was very confused and unfortunately, because the hall door was closed, I couldn't see how his crate got opened. But the hall door opened on its own and he walked out into the living room about 30 seconds later. The hall door was like a regular bedroom door, it closed with a knob/latch and wouldn't have opened even if you pushed on it.
There were no sounds aside from the normal house noises. No cars or people had been in view of the outside cameras since we'd left and no other motion detections had went off.
3. The Snozzberries Tastes Like Snozzberries
I saw this one video of some guy in California that went to this house and spent two hours licking their security camera/doorbell, disappeared for a bit and then came back to resume the licking of the camera for another hour or so.
4. There’s An Explanation For Everything
So I'm sitting in my living room at night and just recently moved into my new flat. I'm in a basement flat, own entrance, in a little townhouse on the edge of town. Quiet area, lots of trees, cheap rent, and like no public transport or cell reception. I'm living alone for the first time. I'd just set up the security cameras and hooked them up to a new monitor—the old one was ancient and gigantic. Hadn't figured out where to put the monitor, as I'd never had a security system before.
It was, at the time, on my work desk, which was at the living room window. I notice this slight yellow glow out the window out the corner of my eyes, slowly getting brighter. As it does, I notice on the camera that there is a huge shadow cast across my door—visible from the camera to the left of the window—that looks kinda animal but weird proportions. I quietly poop myself.
It sits there for a while, like a good 10 minutes, moving just enough to make me wonder if I'm imagining it moving. There's a kind of whining/buzzing noise, but it's faint and I might be imagining it. I suddenly find religion. Then all of a sudden there's a loud POP from inside my building. The glow goes instantly away, there's a sound like a really angry cat and then really rapid footsteps. I'm in like full cardiac arrest at this point, bathing in my own urine, crying for my mum.
Flash forward a week or so. I haven't been eaten by a cat shadow monster, though I do have a sudden new interest in exorcisms. I meet the upstairs neighbors—older couple—when they're having trouble getting a large package up the stairs. They offer me tea as thanks. I notice their cat sitting in the window. Its movement reminds me of something, and after a while, I realize it's the shadow monster.
I ask a few questions to round out the details. Turns out the neighbors had one of those lights-on-a-sensor, which turn on when they detect movement. Cat jumps up to the ledge, light turns on. But it was an eco light, so it warmed up slow. It then went out. Loudly. I'm too embarrassed/relieved to recant the story, so I make my excuses, leaving the nice couple upstairs with the impression that their new downstairs neighbor is a weirdo who stares at cats, has a really keen interest in light bulbs, and a predilection for nervous laughter.
They don't invite me up for tea anymore, but they do ask if I'm OK every time they see me.
5. Door Has A Mind Of Its Own
I woke up one morning and my front door was wide open. Scared the heck out of me but I couldn't figure it out as nothing was missing. Went back and looked at my camera and it turns out at around 4 AM the door just swings open for no reason. Never figured out why.
6. Were His Pockets Full?
My neighbor told me years ago that when she checked the footage from her security cams outside her front house she found a guy coming into her yard, picking her flowers and sticking them down the front of his underwear. He was never seen again. Just once.
7. Objects In Mirror Are Bigger Than They Appear
I have an Amazon Ring and on Halloween night a black cat laid down on my walkway. The shadow made it look like a HUGE cat, like a panther or something. Freaked me out until I zoomed in to see it was just a little black kitty.
8. Not Enough Security
I had been living with my godparents at the time. It was around 6 pm and my godfather gets back from work and asks why there is blood near the pool in the backyard. I had been in the room right next to the pool the whole time so I had no idea what he was talking about. We pull up the security footage and it shows a man jumping the fence in broad daylight, cutting himself with the barbed wire, and looking for ways to get into the house through the back.
I was maybe 10 feet away from him at one point and did not hear a thing. Scary to think what could've happened if a window was open.
9. Came Out Of Nowhere
We have security cameras at my house. One night, around 12 am to 1 am, I heard this loud crash. I go to look out front and our car is smashed in. Apparently what had happened was our neighbor’s girlfriend was celebrating her 23rd birthday at her friend's. Afterward, she decided she was gonna drive across town to stay at her boyfriend's. Two houses away, she slammed head-on into the only car on the street.
The cameras caught the car being pushed backward and you can see her drive off, then drive past and then the third time, she stopped. 23 years old and apprehended for her third DWI.
10. Stay Indoors
A guy at work has a weekend cabin near Payson, AZ. He was complaining about somebody walking around on the deck during the night, but when he looked, nobody was there. A few of us agreed to lend him some trail cameras. He must have gotten about ten. He put them all over the place, covering all approaches to the house with at least two cameras.
That night he heard it again. The next morning he checked the cameras and found a huge male mountain lion had checked the place out.
11. Their Bite Is Worse Than Their Bark
A couple who would drive by at random hours of the day for a full week, would walk up to the house and look at my dogs—pit bulls. Look into each window in the front and even checked the back gate/fence. The camera was older and had no notifications, so the only way we knew was the moment they decided to open up the door—while I was home sick—and were subsequently rushed by my dogs.
I heard the commotion and grabbed the only weapon I had—a bat—to find the front door open and what looked like a murder scene in my living room. Blood. Everywhere. All over the floor, the front door, the little entrance way, the window. Turns out, I have two very good boys and the idiots went to the hospital to eventually be caught by law enforcement.
They were going to take my dogs to be in dogfights. Involved in a bunch of other seedy things, too.
12. Wanna See A Lifeless Body?
One night I was awoken by a few loud banging noises coming from right across the street. The house across was being renovated so it had a big metal dumpster out front and the sounds I heard were typical of throwing something in there. By the time I looked out the window I saw a car speed off, so I go check the cameras.
It was five in the morning on a Sunday, and I'm thinking who in their right mind is dumping stuff at this hour? Sure enough, I see a van pull up and a guy lifts some heavy looking items in. The infrared made it look like he was dumping a body, and given how strange this was for that early on a Sunday morning, I thought it was logical that he had actually dumped someone in there.
Cue me not being able to sleep the rest of the night. Once there was enough daylight I go out and investigate, fully expecting to find a deceased person in there. I was astonishingly relieved when I saw that it was only an old tube-TV and a huge garbage bag full of AV wiring, speakers and a VCR. My guess is the guy must have spent all night wiring his new home theater system and just decided to swing by the nearest construction site to throw out his old stuff.
Creepy, but at least it turned out to be nothing!
13. One Person’s Trash Is Another’s Treasure
Saw a woman who was talking to herself and stealing my trash. I was so confused the week I moved in because every day I threw trash away my can was empty and I kept convincing myself I was just losing it. Finally got my cameras up and realized what was happening. Turns out the lady went to every can up and down multiple streets every night taking and throwing away trash. Found out she had some mental health issues and lived around the corner.
Moved the cans to the backyard instead of the side of the house after all that.
14. Horsing Around
I came home from work one day and could see prints in the snow going up our driveway, then veering left into a field by our house and eventually leading to the main road—we were the only house on a long street. I could tell the prints weren't too recent, as some fresh snow had settled into them. I checked the security cameras, starting at midnight and fast forwarding through the early morning hours, convinced I would catch the weirdo wandering our property and trying to break in and murder us.
After a half an hour of staring at the screen, the perpetrator finally came into view—a horse from the field across the street had broken out and meandered through our yard and field by our house at around 5 am. The buildup was terrifying, but the result of the prints was adorable and hilarious.
15. Secret Identities
Neighbors have security cameras that caught two people outfitted to look like Jehovah's Witness reps that were actually armed thieves. The pair did several burglaries in the area before reports to the authorities from neighbors caught them in the act.
16. It Knows You're Watching
Doorbell cam went off at 3 am. Flipped to the live view and there was a deer standing in my yard staring directly at the camera, close enough that the camera thought it was a person at the door. Deer stood there for a solid minute just not moving. The eyes had that creepy night-vision look so it was extra weird, and then the deer took a huge dump while maintaining eye contact with the camera and that kinda ruined the mood.
17. Fixing The Fengshui
A random guy helped himself to my backyard. Thinking he was a thief, I was already picking my phone to call the non-emergency law enforcement line only to look back at my tablet and see him moving my weed plants. ONLY my weed plants. Some of which are very heavy. He even stepped back a couple of times as if to survey his handiwork.
Once he was seemingly happy with their new arrangement he then left the same way he came. I have never seen this man before in my life. What the heck?
18. Being Thorough
One night the camera on the front—facing the road—captured a white car that pulled up near the gate. It backed onto the road, drove a few steps ahead, then backward, then forward. It switched the lights off, then on, then fog-lights on—special lights in Europe but don't know if they are around the world—fog-lights off, forward, backward, lights off, lights on, and drove off.
I never saw that car again. The ID was not even from the country I am living in.
19. Fight Of The Century
Around midnight, my car alarm was triggered and for weeks I couldn’t find who did it. So I put cameras up to see what happened and after three nights of getting nothing I wet myself when I found a raccoon versus squirrel wrestling match on my front door.
20. Casing The Joint
The guy wearing dark clothes with a hood over his face who walked up to our fence at 3 am, saw the “Beware of Dog” sign and the fake security cameras we have out to hide the real ones. He then proceeded to get down and half crouch/crawl through our gate and into our yard in an attempt to not be "seen" by the fake cameras and got halfway to our door before my sweet good boy went total hellhound and raced to the front door from our bedroom to inform us someone was out there.
As soon as the guy heard the dog and saw the lights in our place come on he just got up and straight ran through the gate and down the street. We filed a complaint with the authorities but nothing ever came of it. He definitely was testing to see if we really had a dog or a security system in place and that just freaked the heck out of me. We went and got motion-activated lights after that as an added deterrent. Good boy got a steak dinner the next night.
He's damned lucky I didn't open the door or he'd have gotten mauled and/or worse.
21. Putting On A Show
My family had one installed two months ago in front of our garage. One night, we got an alert and after watching over the tape, we saw a man doing cartwheels back and forth across our driveway. Very cool.
22. One Door At A Time
Not me, but a family friend. They live in this pretty nice community—the houses are really nice and whatnot—but all of the garage entrances and driveways are in the back and all connect to this small road. There was a string of car thefts in the area, so they put out cameras just in case. They go on a vacation for a few days—they didn't specify where—and they come back and check the cameras.
There's this guy who spent a good hour walking up and down the street trying to open up all of the car doors. Not with a crowbar or anything, but just by using the handle. For the first few cars, he was just pulling the handles really hard. Maybe he thought if he pulled hard enough they would open? But by the time he got to my family friends' house, he looked super bored, and was essentially just checking if anyone had forgotten to lock their cars.
It seems stupid, but just remember that this was probably the guy—or one of the guys—who was stealing all of the cars. At one point, it had actually worked. And that's just really sad.
23. Proof Is In The Footage
I had an umbrella over a patio table that was missing when I got up one day. Reviewed the video and watched the wind catch it and it flew straight up into the air. Quite entertaining. On a less entertaining note, I had someone come to my door and make physical threats. Later this person tried to get a restraining order against me saying it was me making the threats.
I played the video for the judge and he told the other party to leave me alone. Now I have cameras all around my house.
24. Costly Mistake
My house has a garage door that opens up, and when open, it partially obstructs the view of the camera. One day, we left the door up all night by mistake—this is the only time we've ever done that—and in the morning, we all kind of freaked out and closed it right away. Then we realized that one of our bikes was missing.
We go through the security footage, and at about 2 AM, a car drives up and stops right in front of our house. A guy comes out, steals the bike, puts it in his trunk, and leaves. Pretty much what we expected. The video wasn't high enough resolution to capture the license plate of the car, though, especially with it being at night, and the authorities basically said they couldn't do anything about it.
25. Don’t Screw Around, You Screw Around Too Much
My factory is on 10 acres of land in the middle of a city. It’s secured by security fences and barbed wire. It’s tough to get into. Delivery company said they attempted to make a delivery late on a Friday but when we still had people working in receiving. Well, I go to the Saturday footage and decide to look at the front gate just in case I see anything interesting.
After about 20 minutes on recorded time, a hand reaches out from the right side of the frame and then comes back at the screen and covers the camera. Imagine someone mugging you from behind, that’s what it would look like. It freaked me out because I was just watching video roll and a hand appears. Also, this camera is mounted 20 feet up on a hard to reach part of the building.
During the weeks prior we noticed some odd things happening. Hand tools we thought belonged inside the factory were lying outside, outside shed doors randomly opened, etc. We just thought it was a coincidence and the wind blew open the doors. Nope. I reviewed the rest of the property’s cameras and noticed weird things just outside of the frame, like someone was hiding from the cameras but just barely got their hand or foot caught on camera.
So we put up some hidden cameras and sure enough, we saw some teenagers getting through our fence somewhere and screwing around on our factory. They were literally climbing on top of the building and walking the roofline looking for a way in. They tried prying open a roof exhaust fan as a way to get in but luckily were deterred when they saw the fan chopping away at the air.
Luckily nobody was hurt and nothing valuable destroyed or stolen. We found the hole in the fence and secured it.
26. Jerk Move
I watched a fat raccoon knock over my trash cans, pull out a full garbage bag, drag it up on the hood of my car and then rip it open and feast.
27. Old Habits Die Hard
Started to find a beer can or metal bottle in my front yard a couple times a week. Just figured they were blowing out of a neighbors recycling bin. Finally, one day I wanted to see where it was coming from and watched as a man in his 60s drove up to my house, stopped, drank a beer, and tossed it into my yard and drove off.
So I started checking other days, and every day for the 45-day history I had footage, he came by my house between 11:00 PM and 11:05 PM. Now, he wouldn’t always toss his trash but that is what eventually got him caught. It didn’t sit well with my wife or I since we have two young daughters, so we contacted the PD. They waited that night and here he came at the exact same time as always.
Turns out the guy was an alcoholic and for years had done this exact same driving routine every night. The kicker was our house was one of the last lots built so nobody had questioned the trash in the empty lot for years, but with our house now there he couldn’t break his habit. PD scared him by saying we could press charges for harassment but we had no desire to do this.
I checked the cameras every day for four months after that, but he never came by again.
28. Ocean’s Twelve But With Raccoons
Ohhhh story time! So, my dad had two cameras set up. One for his truck and one for my SUV. His truck is always parked in front of the steps to our house. Mine is parked a short distance from his truck. Five years ago, my dad caught an army of raccoons coming into our house through a cat door, taking pieces of trash out of the trashcan and walking out with it. My dad couldn't figure out why it was taking more time to take the trash out.
He viewed the camera a month later and all you could see was 12 raccoon eyes charging in and out of the house. My dad did finally catch them in the house and shot one. Game and Fish wasn't happy and wanted to file charges on him. Didn't work out though because they technically broke into our home. My dad was defending himself.
29. Smile, You’re On Candid Camera
My brother got a new security camera and he was having trouble sleeping. He lives in an apartment building with a couple other people in the hallway. He kept waking up to a person trying to open his door in the middle of the night. He eventually found out it was a neighbor who got hammered a lot and was trying to get into the wrong apartment.
The neighbor eventually went away. A couple weeks later he came home and there were a bunch of officers outside of his apartment. Turns out that his other neighbor, who had also gotten harassed by this guy in the middle of the night, had slain the guy who kept knocking on my brother’s door. My brother caught it all on his security camera.
He turned it over to the authorities, and the neighbor got apprehended and went to prison.
30. Puppy Love
We have one of those ring doorbell things and one day while I was at work it gave me an alert that there was something at the house. No one was home so I couldn’t think of what it was so I check and nothing. I dismissed it but it happened again for close to 20 minutes, at that point I decided to go home to see what was going on. I couldn’t believe my eyes when I saw a puppy sitting at my front door looking through at my dogs on the other side.
I laughed for a week because of it.
31. No Take Backs
We saw someone trying to pry our door handle off with pliers—law enforcement say it was to make it easier to break the lock. We woke up, made some noise and that scared the people doing it and made them run. But they decided to come back two more times with more people, both times failed and after the third time, they were caught.
Turns out they were trying to take our car by breaking into the house for the keys—my mother treated herself to an expensive car that she had her eye on. The thieves had already sold it and thought stealing it would be easy enough. We’ve got all three times saved on our security cameras. It’s really chilling to watch people trying to break into your home.
32. It’s Not The Size Of The Dog In The Fight
I live on a farm in the boonies of my town and I have cattle and chickens with three dogs. I was at school and got an alert that there was movement on my camera. I just thought it was one of my dogs but I checked anyways, what I saw was insane. Two of my dogs were attacking my bull that was out of its pen. They took him down to the ground and I’m just sitting in class like “what the heck!”
No real harm was done to the bull or dogs but when I got home the bull had been put back into the pen and hasn’t gotten out since.
33. Like A Scene Out Of A Movie
Had a security camera in the apartment I lived in, just above the door. This was a couple of years ago, so no live notifications. The buildings are three stories, stacks of four apartments with two on either side of the floor landings. I lived on the third floor. I am at a friend's place in the sister apartment complex just up the street. Not even a two-minute walk.
Anyways, I had made friends with my neighbors. Nice couple, but weird, and also Mormon. Anywho, my neighbor calls me and asks if I was expecting a friend to come by. I tell him no, and that I am out right now. He says there is an undressed guy POUNDING on my door. Like, 28 Days Later angry zombie stuff. Then, while on the phone with my neighbor, the guy starts pounding on THEIR DOOR.
My neighbor, for who knows what reason, says, "I've got a gun. I can shoot him. Should I shoot him?" I said, of course not, unless he comes inside. Then I heard the knocking in the background stop. My neighbor said, "He’s gone". Since I was so close to home, I ran back, wife in tow, to see what was happening. Saw my neighbor and said thanks for calling me.
Roll back the camera—poor quality—and see an undressed man WILDLY smacking my door, then my neighbors, then leave.
34. Frog In The Throat
Our dog catching and then spitting out a frog. It literally jumped out of her mouth. I haven’t laughed that hard in years. She leaves the frogs alone now.
35. Wascally Wabbit
In the late 1990s, early 2000s, my family would put these plastic candy canes along the driveway with Christmas lights strung across the bottoms. Shortly after installing them, a particular wire was cut in the middle of the night. My dad repaired the wire and it happened again the next night. And the next night.
It became a conspiracy on our cul-de-sac to the point where fingers were being pointed at our neighbor, teenagers, etc. Neighbors set up video cameras in their windows pointed directly at our driveway. My dad even rented one and set it up. After two weeks of this, my dad wakes me up at 2 am and asks me to come look at the viewfinder on the camera.
It was a rabbit. Every night, it would trek the same path, find the wire in its way, and snip it with its teeth. Half of our neighbors found this hilarious while a select few were kind of disappointed at the lackluster conclusion. We ended up lifting the wire higher off the ground so the bunny could go under and, needless to say, the wire-cutting bandit never struck again.
36. Lock Your Doors
I have a home security system. I left for work one morning, walked out my back door, got in my car, and pulled out of my driveway. The moment I left the driveway, a homeless, would-be burglar, came out from hiding on the side of my house and tried to open my back door. When he found it locked, he reluctantly wandered off after looking around a bit.
Never would have known if it wasn’t for cameras. Makes you wonder what goes on without your knowledge…
37. Who Called The Authorities?
I have cameras on my front and back doors that send video to my phone when they detect movement. I was out of town and woke up to see several law enforcement officers walking around in my front and back yard. I called my neighbor to find out what had happened and found out that someone had crashed their car through my back fence, which borders the highway.
38. Inches From Death
Had a game camera out once and I had a neighbor who would just walk through my property—I didn’t care, the place is pretty and there’s no back fence. But I kept having sheep go missing so I set up a camera. The camera caught my neighbor walking by, then like 30 seconds later a mountain lion walked by, stalking him.
It apparently never pounced as he was fine, but he had no idea how close he was to that thing.
39. Welcome To The Neighborhood
We bought a new house about eight months ago and installed security cameras recently. I looked over footage to see if it was working properly and didn't want to believe what I found. At around 3 AM there was a random guy that was briskly walking in and out of my driveway, and he kept shifting around. He looked as if he needed to find something. He goes over to one of the bushes on the side—it represents the barrier line—and takes a dump. A legit dump.
I had to replay it a couple times to make sure I was seeing this correctly. Then I thought, "Is that thing still there?" Turns out it was still in the shrub. Guess it was his housewarming gift.
40. Just A Whiff
I saw someone break into my car, take my sweater out of the front seat, stand there and smell it for a solid 5-10 minutes. Then put it back and leave. I gave that sweater away that day.
41. Biding His Time
I live in an apartment unit right next door to an office. They installed a new security camera for their door—which covers a part of mine as well—shortly after I moved in. The office manager knocked on my door a few days after the installation and asked me to come look at something. She pulled up footage of the night before that showed a guy pacing in front of my door for six hours! He even left for a couple minutes and came back with something he tried to stick in my doorframe a few times. I was asleep the whole time and heard nothing.
Turned out to be a recent ex of a friend of mine. I'd only met him once. Still have no idea how he knew where I lived unless he followed her to my place once as we live close by each other. Law enforcement called, reports filed, and they eventually found him. He had been on a pretty bad drug bend since their breakup from what I heard and has no recollection of being there.
Ice is a helluva drug.
42. This Isn’t Where I Parked My Car
Both my ring cameras went off at 1 am, which, because of how they’re angled, means only a full-sized adult can be in my yard. I check the notification and the dude starts walking up the sidewalk to my yard, so the camera with a floodlight kicks on and dude instantly turns around like he was mistaken and goes on to the neighbor’s yard.
Neither the neighbor nor us knew him. Shady. Mostly I just get videos of cats visiting though.
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