Jon Shirek, 11 Alive, December 9, 2020
Just three weeks to go and 2020 will go down as the year violent crime ravaged Atlanta and other major cities, just like COVID-19 is doing, and in part because of the pandemic.
One veteran city leader told 11Alive on Wednesday that for the first time in her memory, every area of Atlanta is now affected directly by crime “as never before.”
Crimes in Buckhead, on Atlanta’s northside, for example, have been drawing a lot of the most recent attention.
Throughout this year, for example, gunfire has erupted at least seven times inside Lenox Square Mall.
On Tuesday, two Good Samaritans were shot and wounded at Peachtree and Collier trying to stop a carjacking.
City Council President Felicia Moore said Wednesday she has never seen so much crime everywhere in the city like this, “in every part of the city, and citizens are a bit weary… I’m just seeing that citizens are shaken by the numbers of violent incidents that are taking place.”
Homicides in Atlanta are up 48 percent over last year, so far. Aggravated assaults are up 14 percent, while rapes, robberies and burglaries are down, overall.
In Police Zone Two, which includes Buckhead, murders are up 33 percent –from six murders, last year, to eight, so far, this year.
By contrast, in Police Zone 3, which includes southeast Atlanta, murders are up 79 percent. And this year there have been more than twice the number of murders there, so far, 34, than in the past two years, combined, in Buckhead.
Moore is working on pay raises for Atlanta Police, trying to find ways to stop officers from leaving the force, and trying to lift low morale.
She’s also urging people to take responsibility for their own safety.