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Do Late Nights Out In Atlanta Mean You Should Expect To Be Shot At, Beaten?

Couple attacked in Old Fourth Ward Friday leaving pizzeria.

A couple leaving in Old Fourth Ward at 2 a.m. Friday were shot at during a robbery.

Neither the man, Jeff Gonzalez, nor his friend, were hit by the bullets the gunman fired at them, but the couple suffered cuts to his lip and her arm from shards of glass as gunfire hit their car, WSB-TV reported.

Their cash, iPhones and the woman's purse were taken in the robbery.

This couple's attack was followed by another attack of gay couple couple in .

Atlanta Police are investigating the incidents. No arrests have been made in either case.

Amy Wenk January 10, 2012 at 06:13 PM
I find these two recent incidents really concerning. We are told never to walk home alone. There's safety in numbers. But in both these incidents, couples were attacked. Can we walk on the streets late at night at all?
Darin January 10, 2012 at 07:38 PM
Ugh -- this one hurts because it's one of my favorite intown spots. My family regularly goes to Across the Street for dinner and also the awesome little Market next to it.
Péralte Paul (Editor) January 10, 2012 at 09:59 PM
I know. It's unnerving to think you have to feel like you have to be on guard 24-7. What's really unnerving is that the guy shot at them even after they gave him their stuff.
Chris H January 10, 2012 at 10:23 PM
Yes they say there is safety in numbers, but I follow these crime reports from all news sources and I would say that at least half or more pedestrian robberies include at least 2 victims. And not all of them are late at night. As we've seen from all the Midtown robberies the past couple years, many of them have taken place in the early evening hours. Last year a group of 4 people were walking on busy McLendon Ave, going to dinner in little 5 and were robbed by two men. And it was only around 7 pm! The fact of the matter is, this kind of crime will continue to deter people from wanting to live in the city. Why pay high prices for your home and high property tax when you are not safe out in your own neighborhood? These guys are killing the lifestyle that we love of walkable, safe neighborhoods.
Péralte Paul (Editor) January 10, 2012 at 11:06 PM
Since I've lived here, APD has always been understaffed. Could it be a numbers problem, Chris?
Chris H January 10, 2012 at 11:19 PM
I do think the APD is very understaffed. However the more direct problem with Midtown and O4W is Boulevard corridor. From the arrest reports that I've read from the robberies in Midtown and O4W, a great many live along Boulevard. They can easily walk over, commit crimes and come right back. Unfortunately the city of Atlanta does not have the power to raze these project like they've done most other ones in the city. Here is an interesting article on the situation there if you have not read it. http://clatl.com/atlanta/down-on-boulevard-positive-change-might-finally-come-to-atlantas-lawless-street/Content?oid=1280106
Péralte Paul (Editor) January 10, 2012 at 11:47 PM
I remember this when It came out. I kept thinking even though it's not technically housing projects, it's a de facto project. I have waited at traffic lights - during the day no less - on the days I have to use Boulevard and saw drug deals go down with APD cruisers stopped at the light next to me. I figured the dept. is just overwhelmed. It looks more and more like a slum each day. Section 8 or no Section 8, Georgia is a Red State, state's rights and all. Seems to me the city could make a case for citing that stretch as blighted and take it by eminent domain.
Doug January 11, 2012 at 01:42 PM
"I know. It's unnerving to think you have to feel like you have to be on guard 24-7." No, it's called living in a city. Other than writing inflamatory headlines, what are you doing to help? When you see drug dealers, do you call 911? Do you really want the city/state to invoke eminent domain?
Sara Van Beck January 11, 2012 at 02:06 PM
The CLoaf article on Wingate is now 2+ years old. Has Wingate held any of the then-promised meetings with O4W residents/groups about their then-redevelopment plans? I've not heard a whisper, except a Wingate employee defending the company when CBS 46 went after them for miserable conditions, after a resident called the tv station for help (she alledged (sp) Wingate only does repairs before HUD inspections). I know Wingate's six or so contracts with HUD for Bedford Pines runs thru 2019, but contracts can be broken if the motivation exists. Can anyone update -?
Péralte Paul (Editor) January 11, 2012 at 02:10 PM
Respectfully, I disagree. I think there's a difference between being aware and alert and feeling like like you have to look over your shoulder at every turn. I grew up in a city much larger than Atlanta, so i don't think it's a given for city life. As for 911 I always call and advise others to do the same (http://patch.com/A-pM9y). But if an officer is right there, seeing what I see, I shouldn't have to. As for eminent domain, if you have a property owner that repeatedly operates what is eyesore and blight on surrounding community going on years and into decades, then yes, I think eminent domain is a tool that ought to be used.
Péralte Paul (Editor) January 11, 2012 at 02:21 PM
Good question, Sara. At one of the recent public safety committee meetings of the NPU-M, a Wingate employee said he wanted to be informed of everything people saw occurring on Wingate property. I can follow-up with APD and housing inspection folks at City Hall.
Péralte Paul (Editor) January 11, 2012 at 05:28 PM
The wild wild west mentality isn't the answer either. For one thing, everyone who lives in the Wingate properties isn't "worthless" as you put it. And your not-so-thinly-veiled race reference is uncalled for. Drug dealers come in all colors, just look at booking photos of folks in rural Georgia. The problem property owners need to be held accountable and face consequences to the fullest extent of the law. As long I've lived in Atlanta, that stretch of Boulevard has stayed as is because property owners know they can get away with it. Eminent domain gets everyone's attention.
N January 11, 2012 at 08:50 PM
Well, the hillbilly meth dealers in rural GA dont affect my Quality of Life in the Midtown area where I work & play...we ALL know who the criminal element is...quit playing the POLITICALLY CORRECT BS game!!!
John Ford January 12, 2012 at 02:13 PM
Despite the idiotic racism, 'N' is right about arming ourselves. The simple fact is that the cops can not and will not be there to protect you. For the most part, the patrolman's job anymore is basically to fill out paperwork for insurance companies. People prey on our neighborhood because we're seen as easy targets, and for the most part, we are. Deciding to carry a weapon isn't a choice to be made lightly and I'm not trying to convince anyone to go that route. But it is a choice I wish more people would make.
Joe January 12, 2012 at 02:24 PM
N, hate to inform you but there are desperate white meth-head criminals in midtown and buckhead too. Ask anyone who has sat on a fulton county grand jury and heard the cases. For whatever reason, these incidents don't seem to get the same sensational news coverage, but alas it's there. Regardless of race we have got to get a handle on this crime trend intown...
Ricky D January 12, 2012 at 03:09 PM
Conceal carry with a permit. Not the answer but it sure makes me feel safer. PS......before you do that though, "please" take some firearm safety lessons!
Péralte Paul (Editor) January 12, 2012 at 05:38 PM
I'm not sure that everyone being armed to the teeth is the right answer. Other industrialized countries don't have the gun lust Americans seem to have and their societies seem to operate just fine in terms of general public safety.
Chris H January 12, 2012 at 10:15 PM
If one of these muggers puts a gun to your head and you try and pull out your gun, you are most likely gonna end up dead. The only advantage I see to having a weapon is if you see them coming and are prepared. But most of the time these guys get the jump on people.
aj January 30, 2012 at 03:42 AM
Then MOVE back to the rural Georgia. What happened the "great White flight" of the 60s that kept white folks out of the city due to desegregation? GO BACK!!!!!!
aj January 30, 2012 at 03:42 AM
This is why I don't go out.
jeff gonzalez May 03, 2012 at 05:22 AM
Im the person that was robbed. Im also the person that spun my car around and ran that hooded piece of shit over, dragging his body over the sidewalk and all the way down the hill to Freedom Parkway. Sure I did a few thousand damage to my car, but well worth it to end his life. An 18 year old that points guns at people needs to be dead.

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