Atlanta Police Take on Repeat Offenders on Streets

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As Atlanta Police work to crack down on car break-ins and the rash of smash-and-grab crimes around Buckhead, police leaders tell FOX 5 there's a problem out of their hands: repeat offenders with short jail time, quickly released back to the streets.

"It's not uncommon to find individuals who've done it 20...30...40 times," Assistant Police Chief Shawn Jones said.

Police officials said so far, they've caught 200 thieves behind car-break-ins this year.

Jones said many repeat offenders are also juveniles, or simply are adults with minimal sentences.

"We think they should be in jail from our perspective," Jones said.

Leaders in the Atlanta Police Department work with the courts to push judges for longer jail time.

The Fulton County District Attorney Paul Howard, Jr. shares police concerns in a statement:

 "The police are hoping Superior and State court judges-- who are good, honest, hard-working people-- begin to understand that their current incarceration rate (less than 17%) is not working and has left communities and law enforcement officials demoralized.  I sense a real cry for help from our police department. People should listen."