Mayor Kasim Reed and the Atlanta Police Department have announced that additional public safety resources will be deployed in East Atlanta, Grant Park and several nearby neighborhoods following three robberies and two recent homicides. Specifically, the Atlanta Police Department has increased patrols and canvas efforts in Zones 5 and 6.

Since May 17, there have been three robberies, two homicides and one shooting in the East Atlanta area. No arrests have been made in the homicides that occurred separately on Metropolitan Avenue and May Avenue, but investigators continue to examine evidence to determine if the crimes are linked. The police department also is actively pursuing leads in the recent shooting at Grant Street and Georgia Avenue, in which the victim was shot in the face.

“My administration’s top priority is public safety,” said Mayor Kasim Reed. “It troubles me deeply to hear of violent crime against people in our city’s neighborhoods. I especially wish to extend my heartfelt condolences to the families and friends of Patrick Cotrona and the other victims. One murder in our city is one too many, and I plan to use all the resources available to me and the Atlanta Police Department to bring the perpetrators of these terrible crimes to justice.”

APD has deployed the following additional resources:

• Increasing police foot patrol presence. APD will partner with law enforcement agencies including the Dekalb County Police Department to conduct joint details with safety checkpoints on the borders of Fulton and Dekalb Counties.

• Standing up mobile precincts with the department’s Community Oriented Policing Section (COPS) for enhanced police presence in neighborhoods.

• Deploying the newly created Tactical Traffic Unit to bring an additional eight officers and a police sergeant into the area.

• Implementing the new Atlanta Proactive Enforcement Interdiction (A.P.E.X.) in Zone 6 to identify violent crime patterns utilizing analytical data.

• Increasing the presence of the Special Operations Section in Zone 6 to include Motors and Mounted Patrol.

• Working with community leaders and organizations to disseminate accurate information and solicit assistance in seeking additional information.

“The Atlanta Police Department takes these incidents seriously and will continue to work aggressively to solve them,” said Atlanta Police Chief George Turner. “The additional resources we are deploying are part of our efforts to reduce violent crime in East Atlanta and throughout the city. We stand with the families of those whose lives have been needlessly cut short, and will work with the community to solve these crimes.”

Anyone with information about these or other crimes in the City of Atlanta is urged to call the police department’s anonymous Crime Stoppers tip line at (404) 577-8477. Tips leading to arrests and indictments in the recent East Atlanta homicides could result in a cash reward of up to $25,000 to the person who provides the information.

Collin Kelley

Collin Kelley has been the editor of Atlanta Intown for two decades and has been a journalist and freelance writer for 35 years. He’s also an award-winning poet and novelist.