According to the FBI, Atlanta ranks fourth in the country for car thefts. And juveniles are often the ones stealing them. The situation is bad enough that the Fulton County District Attorney has a task-force dedicated to fighting the epidemic.
And they may have gotten a big break tonight.
We told you Wednesday night that several police agencies are looking for a bold robbing crew preying on the metro area. Investigators are now going to take a close look at the suspects who led police on a high speed chase Thursday, before crashing near the West End.
Earlier Wednesday, an East Point police car was stolen and dumped in the same area where the latest car-chase ended tonight. Detectives want to know if the suspects in both cases are part of the same crew that's been keeping law enforcement busy, including APD.
"It used to be a real quiet neighborhood where you could leave your doors open without any problems," said Mosley Park resident Veronica Washington. "But lately there's been all kind of crazy things going on. So that bothers me a lot."
Washington gets a lot more exercise these days. That's because she has to walk a lot more. Her car was stolen three months ago.
"Someone broke into my 2000 Taurus and stole it," she said. When she got her car back, it was "in pieces. They had stripped it down. They stripped it down."
Being unemployed, not having a car has hurt her ability to find a job.
"If you put the Lojack system in, or if it comes equipped with it, that's about the most efficient and best way to keep your car from getting stolen," said neighborhood mechanic Roger Poole. "If it is stolen, you're more than likely to get it back."
Poole says for cars that don't have Lojack, the story almost never has a happy ending.
"If they want the car, they're going to get the car no matter, regardless," he said. "They'll steal a tow truck to steal a car if they want it bad enough. No matter what you do. You can leave a pit bull inside the car, it aint going to stop them if they want the car."