Is there any bite behind that bark?
Street takeovers have unfortunately become quite the common occurrence in Metro Atlanta. We’re sure people flock there from other areas to join in the antics as well as record videos to upload to social media, which in turn attracts even more participants. But a new report claims police there are going to throw down the gauntlet and put an end to the lawlessness.
According to WSB-TV, the smaller police departments in Metro Atlanta have set up an “email intelligence network for street racing.” That’s right, in 2023 these law enforcement agencies are going to use the massive power of… email.
That might sound ridiculous, but Lilburn Police Captain Scott Bennett told WSB-TV his and other smaller agencies don’t have enough people to monitor street takeover activity. Through email, larger departments like Atlanta police can share what they know about planned street takeover gatherings.
If in the past these different police departments were caught completely off guard by planned street takeovers, it makes sense how this information sharing would help. After all, we covered before how one city in the Atlanta Metro found out about a planned street takeover and shut it down before it could ever happen. Imagine if other cities did something similar.
Still, even with the information sharing strategy, Bennett admits anticipating and shutting down street takeovers will pose a challenge. But with Atlanta’s reputation of being soft on these types of criminal events, we think cracking down is way overdue.
Street takeovers, or sideshows as some call them, depend on people turning a blind eye and deciding nothing can be done about them. Parents know their kids attend but lie to themselves about the dangers. Neighbors don’t say anything about the problem for fear of reprisal. Police feel overwhelmed, their resources stretched thin. And people can’t get through the shut down intersections for fear of getting shot or the pedestrians observing the takeover mobbing their car.
These events thrive on intimidation to encourage inaction. If communities want to literally take their streets back, they’ll need to rise up against the lawlessness.