Lawmakers address Atlanta's rising crime rates

State and federal lawmakers are taking a hard look at rising crime rates around the country, including the city of Atlanta. Georgia’s Anti-Gang Network gathered on Thursday where Governor Brian Kemp and Attorney General Chris Carr announced what they believe will be the solution to reducing violence and gang activity in the city.

It’s been three years since the state launched the task force which includes local, state, and federal law enforcement personnel and public safety agencies. Despite their ongoing efforts to streamline safety and reduce crime, violence in the city of Atlanta has only continued to go up.

"The purpose is to bring everyone together and talk about what we are doing," said Attorney General Carr.

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Officials are now pushing for more collaboration and new strategies that zero in on the specific issues and trends in the city. This includes efforts that target street racing, sex trafficking, and gun violence.

"Certainly at the state level, we are focusing on street gangs," said Gov. Kemp. "We are grateful of the support the General Assembly has given us."

The so-called "COVID Crime Spike" has even gotten the attention of federal lawmakers. This week, Senator Jon Ossoff asked the ATF and DEA for their support and local participation.

"We’ve seen a significant increase in violent crimes over the last year," said Sen. Ossoff. "In the city of Atlanta, homicides have increased 60 percent."

Officials are convinced that the key to turning the violence around is through agency collaboration and streamlining partnership efforts across the board.

"Every agency has limited resources but when you start leveraging that, you can come together and make a difference," said Attorney General Carr.

Both Kemp and Carr are seeking second terms in their respective offices in 2022.

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