Citizens in a suburban town are demanding meetings to split from Atlanta and create their own police force in response to rising crime rates, according to Fox News.
The Buckhead City Committee, made up of “lobbyists, attorneys, legislators and experts,” want to more efficiently prevent crime by establishing their law enforcement division, according to the group’s website.
“Given everything that’s been going on here, it’s getting worse and worse and worse,” Bill White, the CEO of the Buckhead City Committee, told Fox News on Wednesday. “So, what we’re doing because of the murders going through the roof and the attempted murders and the lack of leadership and nothing changing — the insanity continues — is we’re demanding emergency hearings on our cityhood bills.”
White also said his friends refuse to pump gas at the gas station, especially if they have children. “People believe truly that this is an emergency — that’s the message I’m getting — and that we are living in a war zone,” he said.
Murders in Atlanta were up 63% compared to all of 2020, with 57 reported this year as of May 29. The number of shootings was also up 45%. There were 208 shootings in all of 2020, compared to 302 in 2021, according to Fox News.
In Buckhead, murders were up 40% as of May 29. There were seven this year and five in all of 2020. In 2019 there were only three, according to Fox News.
“I say we have three major issues and that’s all we have … crime, crime and crime,” a resident told Fox News.
The Buckhead Community Improvement District unveiled its Buckhead Security Plan last December to help address some of the security concerns residents have. They have recently funded three patrol vehicles to patrol the neighborhood, created a weekday bike patrol program, and hired officers to monitor its security cameras, according to their site.
Their focus is crimes like street racing, loud noises at party houses, and overcrowding at local establishments.
“We are taking action to reverse recent trends in crime, hold lawbreakers accountable, and restore citizen confidence that Buckhead is safe and secure,” said Jim Durrett, president of Buckhead Coalition and BCID’s executive director.
“Buckhead has, and always will be an important and valued part of Atlanta. Even if an impermeable wall were built around this proposed new city, it would not address the COVID crime wave that Atlanta, the state and the rest of the nation are experiencing,” a spokesperson for the city of Atlanta told the Daily Caller News Foundation.
“That is why this measure is opposed by many residents and the business community. Creating a city is complex and would call for a new school system, the purchase of City owned assets, development of a governing structure, infrastructure, etc. A better use of this energy would be to work together to address the challenges facing our city, not to divide Atlanta.”
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