Atlanta’s homicide count reaches 48 after latest string of shootings

Two people were killed in several others were injured in at least four shootings across Atlanta within 10 hours.
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Two people were killed in several others were injured in at least four shootings across Atlanta within 10 hours.

Two people are dead and several others were wounded in four separate shootings that occurred across Atlanta within a 10-hour span, authorities said Saturday.

The rash of weekend shootings brings the city’s homicide count to 48 since the start of the year as Atlanta’s surge in gun violence shapes up to be the central issue of this November’s mayoral race. Homicides are up at least 52% from this time last year while the number of shootings has increased more than 40%, according to the Atlanta Police Department’s most recent crime data.

ExploreWeekend shootings in Atlanta leave 2 dead, including a 15-year-old

The first deadly shooting of the weekend happened about 6:30 p.m. Friday in southwest Atlanta, according to department spokesman Officer Anthony Grant. Atlanta police responded to a home in the 2100 block of Lang Street and discovered two victims, a man and a woman. The man was pronounced dead at the scene, authorities said. The woman, who had been shot in the leg, was taken to Grady Memorial Hospital.

About three hours later, two men were standing at a bus stop on Fairburn Road near Martin Luther King Jr. Drive when someone in a small white sedan opened fire, striking them both, authorities said. The men were stable when they were taken to the hospital and are expected to survive, but police are still working to determine what prompted the shooting.

Shortly after 2 a.m. Saturday, officers were called to Griffin Street in Atlanta’s Vine City neighborhood and discovered a woman with a gunshot wound. Police said she was driving with another man when someone in a dark-colored sedan began following them.

“The victim was alarmed by the vehicle following them and attempted to exit the vehicle when (the) suspects in the sedan began shooting,” Grant said. “Investigators are working to determine the circumstances surrounding the incident.”

At 4 a.m., a woman was found dead after a shooting at a home on Belvedere Avenue near Cascade Road in southwest Atlanta, Grant said. It wasn’t immediately clear if her death was a homicide or suicide, and the official cause is being investigated by the Fulton County Medical Examiner’s Office.

The weekend shootings come amid a surge in violent crime in Atlanta as police and city leaders strive to find solutions after last year’s dramatic rise in deadly crime. The Atlanta Police Department investigated 157 homicides in 2020, up from 99 in 2019 and the most in more than two decades.

The surge has led to an outcry from rattled residents and business owners, and pressure is building on public officials to put the epidemic of violence at the forefront of their efforts.

Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms recently announced she would not seek reelection this fall, setting the stage for a wide-open race for City Hall.

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