Business leaders, law enforcement unveil Buckhead security plan

There is an aggressive effort to address the recent increase in violent crimes happening across Buckhead.

City and community leaders came together on Wednesday to discuss new strategies to combat the uptick.

The president of the Buckhead Coalition believes there are several reasons as to why this area has seen a rise in violence.

He said there is an urgency right now among everyone involved in this collaboration to finally get a handle on these bold acts.

November 20, a man is shot at an Apple store at Lenox Square.

It was another highly publicized act of violence in Atlanta’s Buckhead community.

That’s what sparked law enforcement and business leaders to try something new.

"This is an attempt to bring the public sector and the private sector together to cooperate," the coalition's President Jim Durrett explained.

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The Buckhead security plan is divided into two main categories: deterrence and enforcement and policy and procedural change.

"The uptick in people being arrested with illegal guns that is very distressing and my hope is by tackling all of the things in the plan that we will be able to get a handle on things," Durrett detailed.

The plan includes creating a strategic grid of license plate readers and cameras throughout Buckhead and increasing security patrols in both residential and commercial areas.

"One kind of behavior leads to an emboldened action in another area. So it's important for us to figure out how to address all of these different things we are experiencing," Durrett said.

The new security plan also calls for using more off-duty law enforcement officers and monitoring overcrowding at problematic establishments.

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In recent months, FOX 5 News has covered numerous shootings, car thefts, and sexual assault cases.

Durrett said a number of issues play into this including the pandemic, police morale, civil unrest, and the economy.

"We're witnessing so many people just brazenly flouting the law and not caring that even if police are nearby, that they're misbehaving in this way," he described.

This collaboration isn't just targeting violent crime but also street racing, noise complaints, and other public safety concerns.

"It's distressing when you're not sure about your own safety if you're gonna be heading out of your house at night," said Durrett.

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He said this initiative aims to increase support for hiring, training, and retention of APD officers as well.

They've already started increasing patrols here and will begin analyzing their other strategies throughout this month.

To read the full plan, click here.