Ongoing Police Investigation
We sent out a news release on Wednesday, July 3 around 6 p.m. updating the media on the ongoing police investigation of the recent burglaries and robberies. I am sending the same release to all of our e-news lists to keep you updated as well.
In addition to the release we sent Wednesday, we had a report of an armed robbery on Sycamore Drive near Grove Street at 3:30 a.m. July 5. The Community Alert is posted on the website with the details. Based on a number of key differences, the police believe that this incident is not related to the other incidents that occured earlier this week.
Please know that the police are working diligently to resolve these incidents and please keep your eyes and ears open if you see any suspicious activity. In addition, Police Chief Mike Booker and his staff are available if you would like for them to come talk to your neighborhood association or community group. Call 404-373-6551 to report suspicious activity or to schedule a meeting with your group.
Ongoing Police Investigation
The City of Decatur Police Department is in the process of investigating a series of 13 day time burglaries that occurred from May 30 - June 26 that appear to be related. The majority of the burglaries occurred in and around S. Candler Street including parts of the Oakhurst and Winnona Park neighborhoods. The burglaries seem to be related to a significantly higher number of similar incidents in DeKalb County and the City of Atlanta. All three jurisdictions are working on a coordinated approach and together have made one arrest, detained five juvenile perpetrators, recovered a stolen vehicle, and recovered stolen property.
The Decatur Police Department is also in the process of investigating an attempted robbery and two robberies that occurred in Oakhurst on July 1 & 2 and a car theft that occurred on Swanton Way in downtown Decatur on July 3 that resulted in the vehicle crashing at Kirk Rd. and South Candler Street. A 15-year-old suspect is currently in custody.
According to information obtained from the witnesses and the victims, both the burglaries and the robberies are being committed by juveniles. Decatur Police Chief Mike Booker said that there is no indication that the juveniles are Decatur residents. He added that these appear to be crimes of opportunity with no regular pattern but that they do share common characteristics in terms of items stolen and the number and age of the suspects involved.
Chief Booker stated that "We are meeting and comparing information on a daily basis with both DeKalb County and City of Atlanta officers working the cases." He added "that in addition to the regular patrol shifts of five officers, the City has called in additional off-duty police officers and re-directed the four special unit officers to assignments related to addressing the current situation." Officers are using marked and unmarked cars and implementing periodic roadblocks throughout the city. Additional uniformed city staff, including firefighters, are assisting in the patrol of city parks, neighborhoods, and the business districts. In addition to responding to all burglaries and processing all latent prints, the police are using the GBI sketch artist and anticipate the release of at least one sketch very soon.
Decatur Mayor Jim Baskett said, "We want to assure the community that resolving these incidents are a top priority for the City Commission, the Police Department and all City staff. We are confident that they are utilizing every available resource to catch the perpetrators."
Mayor Baskett continued, "The police regularly issue community advisories and update them as more information is available for release. We encourage the community to read those advisories and follow the suggested safety precautions." Advisories are also posted on the City of Decatur website at www.decaturga.com.
Chief Booker and other police staff members will attend the Oakhurst Neighborhood Association Meeting on Monday, July 8 at 7 p.m. at The Solarium, 321W. Hill Street and the Winnona Park Neighbors Meeting on Tuesday, July 9 at 7 p.m. at the Decatur Recreation Center, 231 Sycamore Street. They are also available to attend other neighborhood association meetings. Call 404-373-6551 if you would like to request they attend your meeting.
The Decatur Police encourage the community to call if they see any suspicious activity. The non-emergency number is 404-373-6551. If you believe you are witnessing a crime, or have an emergency, dial 911.
Chief, Civic Engagement, Education & Communication