ATLANTA - Arrested not just once, not twice, not even three times. Demarco Presley has been arrested more than 40 times over the last 18 years.
Presley has been arrested again, accused of stealing a car. In fact, records show that many of his arrests were for theft. Now the district attorney has filed a motion to have him classified as a repeat offender. And people who live in the area where the crimes were committed say more needs to be done to keep offenders in jail.
Now, this first came to light because the Atlanta Police Chief brought up the situation. Now, even though Presley is classified basically as a nonviolent offender, one community leader says the type of crimes being committed has an impact on her neighborhood. Demarco Presley needs to be treated as a serious offender. That is what Fulton County District Attorney Paul Howard said in a motion earlier this week about the 38-year-old man who has been in and out of jail since the early 2000s. The rap sheet is long, the mugshots numerous enough to fill an album. Police have a problem with this kind of case. Presley is essentially a non-violent thief.
“The courts don't prosecute. They don't prosecute if we get somebody out of a stolen car. They don't prosecute if we get someone breaking into a car. You see the graphic on the repeat offenders, it's a very real issue. You have got one person with 45 arrest cycles,” said Chief Erika Shields, Atlanta Police Department.
“My reaction to that is ‘how's it working for you.’ I think what we have to do is look at these repeat offenders and look at the effect that it's something on the morale of the APD, who are consistently catching the same criminals over and over again,” said Anna Walsh, Concerned Citizens United.
The standout offense on the Presley docket is some kind of car crime. A resident told me the record should not be taken lightly.
“Entering auto is certainly a concern. There's a park less than a mile from my house where there have been multiple instances of entering auto while there have been birthday parties and Girl Scout meetings happening in the middle of the day,” said Walsh.
Now back to the Howard motion, in plain language, it states that Presley is an extreme repeat offender and the recidivism law should apply to him when his next time in court comes up on October 9.
So, what does that recidivism mean, repeat offender? That means when a case is resolved, whatever that punishment is given by the judge, that will be real time. It will be like in the federal system. You get five years; you serve five years.