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NPU-B talks community crime
by Caroline Young
July 03, 2012 10:05 PM | 1403 views | 0 0 comments | 20 20 recommendations | email to a friend | print
“Violent crime” is down in the Buckhead area, according to the Atlanta Police Department’s new Zone 2 Commander Maj. Van Hobbs.

“We look good in violent crime. We’re down in homicide, rape, robbery and burglary,” he said at the Atlanta Neighborhood Planning Unit-B meeting Tuesday night at the Cathedral of Christ the King in Buckhead.

Also, he said aggravated assault is up from last year but Hobbs said it is currently dropping.

However, burglary and car larceny are indeed an issue.

He spoke about a “Clean Car Campaign” to make people aware of the recent and recurring car larceny in the area. He said valuables like lap tops, briefcases, purses and GPS systems are “just left in plain view while they [people] leave cars in lots.”

Hobbs said most of the thieves are “mobile” and often come from surrounding areas, such as Stone Mountain, Decatur, East Point and College Park.

Additionally, he said catalytic convertors are often stolen out of “large trucks they can get under easily or Element-type vehicles.”

On July 1, a "career criminal" was arrested in zone 5 near Jersey Mike's sandwich shop in Midtown, according to Sgt. Scott Ormond of the Zone 2 Criminal Investigations Unit.

Ormond said the man was a commercial and residential burglar, and went back and forth between zone 2 and zone 5.

Apparently, the man confessed to “eight and counting” offenses, according to Ormond.

Unfortunately, "career criminals" are still roaming the streets for a few reasons, according to Tiffany Harlow, Atlanta Judicial Court assistant district attorney.

“We’ve had a problem with judges being really lenient,” Harlow said at the meeting. “Our guidelines have been pumped up.”

She said it also makes it easier for criminals to get off when victims do not show up to the court hearing, which happens often.

“It’s imperative the victims show and are given the opportunity to speak,” Harlow said.

She spoke about the Citizens' CourtWatch program, which is described as the "eyes and ears of the community in court" on the Fulton County District Attorney website, and was created as a way to include citizens in the criminal justice system.

Harlow said NPU-B committee members will soon be invited to attend specifically significant trials.

NPU-B chair Sally Silver said it is just as important for the general public to show up too.

“You may not be a victim this time," Silver said, "but you may be next on the list."

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