Man stabbed multiple times outside Peachtree-Pine shelter
Friday morning incident the most recent violent crime reported outside the homeless shelter located just south of Midtown.
A man who told police that he was a Poncey-Highland resident told investigators that was stabbed four times by another man during an early Friday morning incident outside the Peachtree-Pine homeless shelter just south of Midtown.
According to the Atlanta police report, an altercation ensued outside the shelter near the intersection of Peachtree and Pine streets around 3:30 a.m. The suspect told the victim he owed him $60 and not long after began hitting the victim.
When the 33-year-old victim began to fight back, the suspect allegedly produced a knife and stabbed the victim four times, including once to the left side of his neck and arm.
The suspect, described by the victim as a light-skinned black, standing 5-foot-11 to 6-feet tall with dreadlocks, then fled the area on foot. The victim was transported to nearby Emory University Hospital Midtown with serious stab wounds that were not considered life threatening.
Earlier this month, three women were robbed at gunpoint near the shelter, while four weeks back a taxi cab driver was assaulted by several men and robbed after dropping off a passenger near the Peachtree-Pine shelter building, which is operated by the Metropolitan Atlanta Task Force for the Homeless.
The hospital, located at 550 Peachtree Street, is situated just a block away from the shelter and concern has grown for the safety of staff and patients when outside the medical facility.
The most recent incident came less than a week after the City of Atlanta announced that it would benefit greatly from the state receiving more than $4 million in rental assistance to prevent homelessness or unnecessary institutionalization among the state's low-income individuals with disabilities.
The Peachtree-Pine shelter has been housing hundreds of homeless men on a daily basis for the last decade and a half. In addition to helping provide homeless persons needing immediate and emergency assistance, the 95,000 square-foot facility, the largest shelter space in the southeastern United States, has been a source from where a number of problems for Midtown and surrounding neighborhoods have generated.
Atlanta Police Department officials have confirmed that a certain amount of criminal activity that occurs in and around Midtown originates from those staying at and around the shelter.
Last month, the City scored a major legal win over the Task Force for the Homeless that could lead to the 2013 closing of the Peachtree-Pine shelter. In January, the Eleventh Circuit U.S. District Court upheld a 2011 lower court ruling in favor of the City after the Task Force filed a 2008 lawsuit in response to the City seeking to collect on delinquent water and sewer bills.
It marked the latest in a series of legal setbacks for the Task Force and is reportedly the end of the legal process at the federal level.
In February 2012, the Georgia Court of Appeals blocked a Fulton County superior court judge’s decision that the Task Force must relinquish control of the shelter. Control of the shelter was to be handed to the United Way of Metropolitan Atlanta, which was then going to assist the men who stay there find homes.
Atlanta City Councilman Kwanza Hall represents District 2 where the shelter sits. While he declined to comment on the on-going legal flaps over the shelter, Hall did say the time is coming where a change will have to come with regards to the shelter and the men who stay there.
“There’s still a lot of energy around that of course in terms of the neighbors wanting to see some positive change there,” the councilman told Patch last month. “All-in-all, from a philosophical standpoint, I’m firmly behind smaller footprint, supportive housing with a case management and a total structure for job placement and training. If we don’t have that in small footprint facilities, I think it’s too difficult to manage on a large scale the individuals in such a large building.
“I think most of the organizations in the homeless community that offer services agree with that philosophy and I think as a city we have the will and all the resources to bear to make that change happen and to shift the paradigm. I believe it will happen it’s just a matter of time. The legal system is the legal system.”
About three blocks north of the shelter, ground will very soon break on a state-of-the-art, $225 million, 115,000 square-foot cancer-treating proton facility on a 2.39-acre property bounded by Peachtree St., North Ave., Juniper St., and Ponce de Leon Ave.
The Georgia Proton Treatment Center at 615 Peachtree St., the state’s first proton therapy facility and just the 10th in the country, is a joint venture by Emory Healthcare and Advanced Particle Therapy, LLC of San Diego. When completed, it will employ approximately 110 professionals and treat around 1,900 patients annually.
There have been rumors that Emory officials have been buying property in the area of “SoNo” – the south or North Avenue dub-district of Downtown – with hopes of creating a campus-like environment around the hospital that would include mid-rise development.