Home Invasions on the Rise in Atlanta
Security has long been considered one of our basic needs for survival. If you should feel safe anywhere, it ought to be in your own home. Sadly, this basic right is coming under attack in the greater Atlanta area where violent home invasions are on the rise.
In the recent slew of break-ins, perpetrators have committed burglary, rape, assault and even murder against innocent people who happened to be at home at the time.
Becoming the victim of an assault in your own home is very unsettling to imagine. What is further startling about this home invasion trend is that many property owners are not taking the necessary precautions to prevent them.
Consider the case of one victim, Ms. Zaquavia Kingsberry. The 33-year-old mother of two was a staffer at a woman’s shelter. She was simply taking a nap one afternoon when criminals kicked down the door and shot her twice, killing her. The crime scene? A third floor unit in an apartment complex with gated parking, specialized keys and security cameras, located in affluent Buckhead.
A security audit after the murder showed a number of security lapses on the property. There was a fence with an opening, an outside door that failed to lock and a portion of the parking garage that could easily be climbed over.
Those were not the most shocking finds from the audit. As it turned out, in the nine months leading up to the murder, nine other tenants’ doors were kicked in. Despite this known problem, the property management company did not upgrade the deadbolt locks to have longer, sturdier screws. It is believed that if the door frames had longer screws and metal plates for the locks, the door could not be kicked in and Ms. Kingsberry’s life might have been saved.
Another home invasion victim – Ms. Honey Malone – may also still be alive had the property owner at her Stone Mountain apartment complex taken certain measures to improve security. Ms. Malone was shot to death in a home invasion four years ago. Her mother has since been awarded an undisclosed sum from the property owner in a lawsuit connected to Ms. Malone’s death.
These murders highlight a common thread between properties where home invasions have occurred: these properties have a history of criminal activity, and generally speaking, the property owners are not stepping up security in response to previous crimes.
It is a property owner and apartment manager’s duty to provide adequate security to protect tenants and visitors from crime and violence. If corners are cut to save money on security, it can create the opportunity for the nightmarish scenario of being attacked in a home invasion.
Fighting for Your Rights
The attorneys at Deitch & Rogers LLC have been fighting for the victims of violence and home invasions for over 30 years. If you or a loved one have been harmed in an attack, please reach out to us today.
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I have seen Gilbert Deitch in every capacity as a lawyer. I have opposed him in premises liability cases, used him as a consultant and seen his work as a trial lawyer
Gino Brogdon, Former Judge
Fulton County Superior Court