(Courtesy YouTube: cyclist404)
ATLANTA -- A woman who reported an attempted carjacking in her Cabbagetown neightborhood last month has now become a carjacking victim.
Both attacks were caught on a neighbor's security camera and posted on YouTube. The details are hard to make out in the videos, but 11Alive News talked with both victims and obtained police reports on the thefts to shed more light on what happened.
According to police, on May 11, two gunmen approached a woman in the parking lot of the Milltown Lofts on Wylie Street, near DeKalb Avenue. They stole her keys and tried to steal her car, but the locks didn't work. Six days later, the thieves came back with the keys and got away with the BMW. It was later found with drug paraphernalia in the car. The engine was blown. It's now sitting at a repair shop on Howell Mill Road.
But officers are still looking for the 2006 gray Nissan Altima stolen on June 20th. It belongs to a woman who witnessed the first attack and called police for help. She says the men rushed up on her as she climbed the stairs to her home. One of the suspects had a gun.
"That's really all I thought about. That's why I dropped everything and just ran," she said in a phone interview with 11Alive.
There are security cameras on property but it was a homeowner's camera that actually caught the crimes. Ron McNeely says he installed the cameras years ago to protect his own vehicle and home. Once he learned about the carjackings he reviewed the video and posted it on Youtube, then made a copy for police.
"I think it's important as soon as you can to get it out to the public to see if someone recognizes that guy. And we had the video to police in 30 minutes. So they knew what he looked like, what he was wearing," said McNeely.
Homeowners in the gated community now plan to meet to discuss installing additional cameras, setting up a neighborhood watch, and perhaps even hiring a police officer to patrol at night.
Police are not sure if the two carjackings are connected but the woman wonders if she was targeted for reporting the first attempt to authorities.