As most of you know by now, I have been stressing the importance of the Clean Car Campaign for years now, and, granted, we have made great strides here in VaHi as to reducing the number of such incidents every week – but they still continue to be a major crime factor here as well as all over Zone 6 (http://www.atlantapd.org/zone6.aspx) and city-wide. Also, granted, a majority (as a rule) of these victims are visitors to our neighborhood as opposed to residents, and this emphasizes the responsibility that we all have to warn our guests to clean out their cars before enjoying time here. Our vibrant hospitality and retail business has a large responsibility here in warning visitors – either verbally or by signs on front doors. The customer that goes back to their car to find a broken window and a loss of personal property may never return – as well as going back to Doraville, Dunwoody or Douglasville and telling all of their friends and neighbors what a dangerous neighborhood VaHi is. It’s that simple. APD has a warning poster (about 18″x24″) and if you are interested in placing such a sign at your business – let me know and I will order enough to be placed all over the neighborhood.
To give you an idea as to the size of this crime problem – these are APD stats from just week #14 (4/1 to 4/7) of this year. In this week alone there were 181 such incidents city-wide, with 52 of these break-ins reported just here in Zone 6. Year-to-date, Zone 6 has had 448 reports of car break-ins versus 406 last year – a 10% increase. Year-to-date city-wide there have been 2158 reports versus 2210 last year – a paltry 2% decrease. Another way to look at this total city-wide year-to-date figure is to assume that it will take at least 15 minutes ( a bare minimum) for the responding officer to handle an investigation and write up a report – this translates to about 540 hours devoted so far this year to this crime – 540 hours that could have been spent patrolling. Yeah, I know that there are those cars that are broken into with nothing taken and without anything showing to tempt the thief – but these are the exception, not the rule. To see for yourself these figures as well as all of the rest of the city stats – go to http://www.atlantapd.org/crimedatadownloads.aspx
I feel sure that the folks who are reading this report are not the ones who are leaving their laptop on the front seat – but PLEASE, pass this on to your friends and neighbors who are guilty of not cleaning out their cars. We are the ones who can control and lower the stats on this crime category.