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Simple Security Measures Could Have Prevented the Shooting of Kendrick Reves at South Hampton Estates Apartments

Three masked men fled South Hampton Estates Apartments on Tuesday, June 9 after shooting 25-year-old Kendrick Reves. Reves died at Grady Memorial Hospital from a gunshot wound to the chest.

Sadly, this incident is the latest in a long line of fatal shootings at South Hampton Estates Apartments. A young man named Zerrick Cokley was shot and killed there in March, 2019. In 2017, a victim was killed while sitting in a car on the property. There was a shootout in 2016. In 2009, two women were killed inside their home during a robbery. Reviewers on Google complain of shootouts and drug dealers operating on property.

“When the owners and managers of apartment communities know about a history of violent crimes on their property, they have a legal obligation to take reasonable steps to make the property safer for residents,” says Atlanta lawyer Chuck Clay. Chuck notes that proper lighting, functioning gates, and visible security cameras are some of the steps responsible owners and property managers use to make a property less appealing to criminals looking for targets of opportunity. When crime is pervasive at the property and its surrounding areas, security guards and/or off-duty police officers are often necessary to provide residents, their guests, and staff members a safe environment.

“When an apartment complex fails to respond to known threats and take appropriate precautions,” Chuck says, “they can be held legally liable for violent crimes that occur on their property.”

Georgia law allows the victims of violent crime or their families to use the civil justice system to hold apartment owners and management companies accountable when they fail to take reasonable steps to protect their tenants. Chuck says it is up to the families of the victims to stand up for their loved ones and demand justice.

Help Make Atlanta Safe

The police can only do so much to prevent crime, but the owners of apartment communities have the power to add security features to their properties that can deter criminals and potentially save lives. If we can use the civil courts to force property owners to make necessary security improvements, we can help Make Atlanta Safe.

Pratt Clay for Make Atlanta Safe

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