An exclusive Atlanta neighborhood plagued with a rash of violent crimes has reportedly decided to separate from the sprawling Georgia capital and create its own police force.
Bill White, chairman and CEO of the Buckhead City Committee, told Fox News on Thursday that the decision to split was made as crime in Atlanta has skyrocketed while police are underfunded.
“We filed our divorce papers at the city of Atlanta — and our divorce is final,” White told hold Bill Hemmer, adding: “We have two bills in the Georgia legislature dropping in January to decide this referendum ballot.”
White estimated that nearly 80 percent of his community will vote in favor of the separation.
The new community, Buckhead City, will have its own law enforcement system, he said.
“We’ll have our own court. We’ll have our own judge. We’ll have our own jail,” White said. “And we are going to put the smackdown on this crime once and for all here, because the people of Buckhead have had enough.”
He said Mayor Keisha Bottoms’ woke policies have emboldened criminals and let the police force down.
“They feel demoralized, underpaid, under-recognized. They are being told basically not to fight crime in the way they would like to,” White said.
The move comes as the upscale community has been beset by a wave of violence, including the shooting of 41-year-old Andrew Worell.
The father of three was taking a walk on June 5 when a suspect identified as Gaelen Newsom, 22, pulled up alongside him in a silver sedan and allegedly shot him.
Newsom allegedly fired at two other people jogging in the area but they were not injured, police have said.
Deputy Police Chief Charles Hampton Jr. said Newsom went on to crash into and seriously injure a man who was taking out the garbage, according to Fox News.
Two other joggers reported being shot about the same time.
Newsom has been charged with one count of attempted murder, three counts of aggravated assault, and two counts of possession of a firearm.
As of May 29, murders in Atlanta were up 63 percent year-to-date compared to 2020, with 57 reported this year, accord to police statistics cited by the network.
The number of shootings was also up 45 percent, from 208 in 2020 to 302 this year.
In Buckhead specifically, murders year-to-date were up 40 percent as of May 29, with seven this year and five in 2020, according to the statistics reported by Fox News.
That’s a 133 percent spike from the three reported at the same time in 2019 — but murder jumped 200 percent in the most recently available 28-day period.
Two have been reported this year compared to none during the same period in 2020, Fox News reported.
“A new Buckhead City will do a much better job and will work very well with Atlanta. We’re going to help Atlanta. We’re going to be two strong cities, prosperous and safe, we pray,” White said Thursday.