West Smyrna

An Open letter: SOMETHING needs to be done about CRIME in Atlanta

Posted in: Neighborhood Planning Unit V

Mayor Kasim Reed

Police Chief, Richard J Pennington
Zone 3 Commander, Major Ernest Finley
Members of City Council

Dear Mayor Reed and elected officials,

On Sunday January 3rd at 2pm in the afternoon, my wife was preparing our car for a Sunday outing with the family. While bringing some things into the house, she noticed a man walking up our driveway. He proceeded to get in to the car, which was running as my wife began yelling for him to stop. As he boldly backed out of the driveway, he nearly ran over my wife and sped away down the street.  

I am an artist/entrpreneur living in Zone 3 Atlanta with my wife, a Pre-K teacher and our 7 year old daughter and 1 year old son. I have lived in various communities in the city of Atlanta for more than 10 years. In 2007 my wife and I proudly purchased our home in the Summerhill section of Atlanta. We had worked extremely hard for more than a year saving our money, completing first-time home buyer programs, looking at various neighborhoods and getting all of our loose ends tightened up so that we could realize the dream of home ownership. After an extensive search, we found what we believed to be the perfect home for us, at what we thought was an amazing deal. The house, built in 2006 had become foreclosed before construction was completed. There was some minor damage done while the house sat unoccupied, but a small investment would ensure our vision and our dreams were within reach. Now some 2 and a half years later our dream is looking more and more nightmarish. Since moving into our house in  2007 our home has already been broken into 3 times and all 3 times were during the day.

This last episode is the ultimate atrocity. My wife and I do not drive a fancy car. We do not have expensive electronics, flat screen t.v.'s, jewels or any showy possessions. But what we do have we have worked hard for and it is a complete shame that there is a gross disregard and lack of security in a neighborhood that houses a police precinct LITERALLY 3 blocks away. Now, understandably, my wife no longer wants to live in the house we worked so hard to make into home. She no longer wants to live in the neighborhood we've come to know and love, a neighborhood convenient to both our jobs and our children's schools. She nor I no longer feel safe in our own home. This is unacceptable!

I can not and will not be another quiet victim in this matter. I refuse to merely be another statistic. The responding officer informed us that,  "this is just a bad area."  I refuse to accept that. I refuse to allow criminals, drug addicts and derelicts to force me out of my home. If the police are aware that crime is high in a specific area, I would expect that means they would be more diligent in surveying the community and protecting the families that live there. There is no reason that law-abiding, tax-paying citizen's should live in fear!  As a citizen of this city, I demand that your office do something immediately about the crime in this city. I am submitting this letter to your office as well as the offices of all the city's elected officials. I am also posting this letter on social networks and am asking my fellow Atlantans to stand with me and vocalize their disdain for safety concerns we citizens have. More must be done and done immediately.

My wife and I are thankful that she was not injured or worse in the occurrence of January 3rd. We are also aware that the car is just a "thing" and that what's most important is that we have our family in tact. But tolerating the boldness of these crimes in our neighborhoods is no longer acceptable.


Fahamu Pecou

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Did you receive a response? 

Mr. Pecou,


We are having the same issues in Zone 4 - Cascade Heights area. I too have had my home broken into 3 times in the past year.  My wife feels exactly the same...she wants to leave but the housing market is not amenable to that now. I, along with two other neighbors have recently started a neighborhood block association to address these same concerns.  We are planning on writing letters, pressuring our elected officials and even witholding dollars!  We are interested in partnering in any way you deem beneficial.


We will not be run out of our homes by individuals whom have no regard for decency.



Fritz Barjon

Childress Block Association

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