Residents and businesses along the westside off Howell Mill Road are becoming increasingly concerned about brazen crime in their neighborhood.
Twice this month, patrons just outside of , located at 1058 Howell Mill at the intersection of Brady Avenue, have encountered alleged thieves.
On July 1, 64-year-old Sandra Richardson was robbed at gunpoint as she exited the longtime music establishment. She had just approached her vehicle when a car pulled up and out popped a man from the rear passenger seat with a handgun.
Then on the evening of Tuesday, July 10, a male patron left the club to find a pair of male suspects attempting to steal the stereo from his car parked on Brady. In this case, the victim shouted at the thieves and then was said to have "opened fire" on the alleged assailants, causing them to flee.
A passing MARTA police officer responded, but was out of jurisdiction and did not file a report. An Atlanta police report was never filed by the victim, who apparently had been drinking and did not want to involve the police.
The two recent encounters have caught the attention of the management at White Provision Residences, located across the street from Northside Tavern at 1100 Howell Mill. Midtown-based Jamestown Properties owns and operates the White Provisions District complex that also contains many popular shops and restaurants such as , Ormsby’s, JCT Bar, Bacchanalia, and Star Provisions.
In a letter to residents last week, property management explained that neighborhood business owners are taking a proactive approach to addressing the safety issue:
The steps that we are taking to increase the safety of our community are:
1. We are stationing an APD Officer at the rear entrance to the community and Brady Ave through Wednesday, July 18th during the evening starting at 11pm. This is a cost that Savvy Snoot, Northside Tavern and Jamestown are splitting in order to jointly address this concern.
2. We have been in contact with multiple APD Officers regarding obtaining information regarding the incident. We have also reached out to MARTA Police to provide the contact information for the responding officer so we can provide as much information as possible to APD.
3. We have scheduled a meeting with the Zone 5 Commander, Major Whitmire to discuss the increase of crime in our community, what steps are being taken to address it and we are requesting additional patrols of our community.
4. We are sitting down with the owners of Northside Tavern and Savvy Snoot to establish a longterm security plan that will address the safety concerns with the recent robberies involving Northside Tavern patrons. We are requesting that Northside Tavern provide nightly Security.
The recent incidents follow a rash of West Midtown crimes involving suspects using guns to prey upon victims walking the streets alone. Late last month there was a series of such robberies along 10th Street near Georgia Tech and the Home Park neighborhood.
Two blocks north of Brady is Huff Road, which borders the White Provisions District. Portions of Huff have had recent crime too. In May, five people, including four female employees, were robbed at gunpoint after leaving a strip club, located a 1271 Marietta Boulevard near Huff.
In recent months, owners and residents of the nearby Huff Heights and M-West townhome communities have voiced concerns and taken action in response to "criminal" activity surrounding the club and outside behavior of its patrons.