FULTON COUNTY, Ga. - Fulton County Police are looking for a shooter or shooters after someone opened fire on a house on Connell Road early Thursday, striking a 12-year-old girl.
The gunfire happened shortly before 2 a.m. Neighbors called officers after hearing several shots. The mother at the house said when it was all over she found the 12- year-old girl with a gunshot wound.
Medics rushed the child to a hospital. Authorities said she was alert, conscious and breathing at the time.
The area has seen a pattern of violence recently. Just last week, the Pointer Ridge subdivision experienced three shootings and a firebombing, according to officers.
The first happened Nov. 7 in the 6300 block of Cedar Hurst Trial. Police said they found 130 shell casings after shots were reportedly fired. About a half mile south of there and a day later in the 6500 block of Woodford Drive, police said a home was firebombed by a Molotov cocktails. Shots were also reported in that incident with police finding 30 shell casings.
On Nov. 10, two homes were targeted along Buckhurst Drive. Police said they found 80 shell casings between the two homes.
Investigators said they believe this may be a result of gang activity. Neighbors insist the area is under siege.
They took their safety concerns to the mayor of the new city of South Fulton Thursday night.
Robert Coleman, 81, said the older subdivision has changed for the worse in his 40 years living here.
“We have a lot of gunfire out here. On this street and the street behind us. So if they could clear that up,” said Coleman.
He was not alone in his concern.
“And I’m afraid because as soon as I go to the door I’m going to go with my gun,”’ said one woman at a town hall meeting put on by the mayor’s office.
She and others called Mayor Bill Edwards and Fulton County Police to do something about violence at Pointer Ridge.
“And we’re here to talk about some solutions that make sense,” said Mayor Edwards.
The mayor said some solutions, include assuring Fulton County operate its portion of the police department contracted to the city at 2016 levels or better. The crowd was told increased patrols in the neighborhood is already happening. And that a gang task force is in place to track the trouble makers.
“They need to go to jail. If they’re a nuisance they need to go to jail,” said another man in the crowd.
Residents called on police to take a tough stand and local landlords to better vet renters. The mayor called on residents to stay involved.
“Whatever it takes I want it enforced here and I want to eradicate this problem,” said Mayor Edwards.
A woman who’s lived in the neighborhood since the mid-70s said she opted not to go to the meeting. She did not want her name used, but said she hopes City Hall’s promise to protect Pointer Ridge rings true.
“You keep your head down you mind your own business. You just trudge along, that’s all you can do and hope somebody gets smart,” she said.
The 12-year-old girl hit by gunfire was treated and released from the hospital.