Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance-Bottoms (D) is sending a message to those wreaking havoc on the streets of the affluent, metropolitan city.
During a press conference on Sunday evening, Bottoms addressed the violence-filled, Fourth of July weekend in Atlanta, Georgia, which left dozens of people wounded and 4 killed, including an 8-year-old child.
For Bottoms, the shootings which mostly took place during the late Saturday night hours into early Sunday morning, are the last straw.
“Enough is enough,” Bottoms said. “We have talked about this movement that is happening across America at this moment in time when we have the ears and the interest of people across this country and across this globe who are saying they want to see change.”
While Bottoms did acknowledge that the Civil Rights Movement does have a “defined common enemy,” she noted that this situation is quite different.
Despite the calls for police reform, Bottoms sought to make something very clear: many of the shootings that took place in Atlanta were not a result of officers firing their weapons.
“The reality is this, these aren’t police officers shooting people on the streets of Atlanta,” Bottoms said. “These are members of the community shooting each other – and in this case, it is the worst possible outcome.”
See Bottoms’ remarks below:
Mayor Bottoms & Interim Chief Bryant speak on 8-year-old murdered over the holiday weekend. https://t.co/iCjls5QC47— Atlanta Police Department (@Atlanta_Police) July 5, 2020
Bottoms also touched on the tragic death of Secoriea Turner, the 8-year-old child shot and killed, close to the location where Rayshard Brooks was shot and killed by a now-former officer at the Atlanta Police Department.
“We’re fighting the enemy within when we are shooting each other up in our streets. You shot and killed a baby, and it wasn’t one shooter — there were at least two shooters,” Bottoms said.
She went on to demand action for the child killed, saying, “I am asking you to please honor this baby’s life. Please, if you know who did this, please turn them in.”
Bottoms’ press conference followed a string of shootings in and around the Atlanta metropolitan area. A total of six different shootings led to four people being killed and at least 22 people were wounded.
Democratic-run cities and states have been widely criticized for calls to defund the police. However, Democratic lawmakers have emphasized that defunding law enforcement does not mean abolishing it but rather prioritizing budgets, as previously reported on IJR.
Amid intensifying protests and calls for the end of police brutality, the Atlanta Police Department has also faced a shortage of officers.