Residents in East Atlanta neighborhood say drug dealing, crime spiraling out of control

People who live in one East Atlanta neighborhood say the crime problem has gotten out of hand – some say worse than they’ve ever seen.

"I’m a senior citizen, and I’ve been over there for 26 years," said Lois Hurt, who lives in the area of East Side Ave. "I have seen a drastic change in this neighborhood.
Hurt stood alongside a group of about a dozen neighbors who told FOX 5’s Rob DiRienzo they’ve had just about enough.

"A house got set on fire, we’re seeing stuff stolen from people's yards, we’re having women assaulted that are just walking," said Amy Dunn, who also lives in the neighborhood.

Less than a mile away, someone shot up an elderly woman’s home earlier this week.


Atlanta police searching for suspect who shot up elderly woman's home

A southeast Atlanta woman says she can not sleep peacefully anymore after someone shot into her home over the weekend.

A FOX 5 analysis of APD Zone Six crime data in East Atlanta shows calls for drugs and narcotics have doubled in 2023 compared to this time last year.

Thefts are up 18 percent while assaults have ticked down 22 percent.

"We have two kids under two, and we found a needle on our driveway," said Ryan Murphy. "We regularly see people out of their minds, babbling incoherently."

The residents said there is at least one home in particular on their street that seems to be the epicenter of the crime.

"All the neighbors are impacted, and the police are continuing to do nothing about it," Dunn said.

Atlanta police responded by saying, "Zone 6 commanders are aware of the complaints in that area and will continue to investigate their concerns. We do encourage citizens to report any suspicious activity that they may see including possible drug sales or quality of life issues."

The last thing these residents say they want to do is leave, but they feel like they’re running out of options.

"I just want the neighborhood to be a neighborhood where people want to stay, raise their kids," Hurt said.

A spokesperson for Councilmember Liliana Bakhtiari, who represents the neighborhood, says her office working closely with these residents and is calling on APD to step up patrols and ultimately target the source of the crime.