Gang activity has Chamblee police preparing for a busy summer - CBS46 News

Gang activity has Chamblee police preparing for a busy summer

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A new section of the City of Chamblee was annexed on January 1.  But even before that police were getting ready for an expected increase in calls for service.

That increase has arrived, and for the most part the police department's expectations were pretty close to what they have seen so far.

But gang activity in the newly annexed portion of the city has Chief Donny Williams concerned.

Williams and the officers on the force knew they would have to deal with gangs in the area, but they aren't making it easy on the cops.

Williams says gangs are adapting. They no longer wear identifiable clothing, such as a colored bandana, or use tattoos to signify their affiliation.

This means they are able to blend back into the community after committing their crimes, or stay hidden until they are ready to act.

This inability for non-gang members to know who they are dealing with may have resulted in a man getting shot on Saturday night.

According to police, three men, at least one of which is thought to be a gang member, approached another group of men who were sitting in a driveway of a residence on Plaster Road.

An exchange of words turned violent after the potential gang member's offer of drugs was rejected by the men in the driveway.

According to police, the suspected gang member flashed some hand signs and then pulled out a gun and shot one of the men in the driveway in the leg.

Police have not yet located the shooter.

At a nearby city park, residents got their exercise in early. Juanita Carmona says she won't come out at night because gang members come to the park to smoke marijuana, and she doesn't feel safe.

Elementary school student Steven De Lao was with his mother at the park. He says he sees gang members all the time but steers clear of them.

Williams is confident the new recruits the city has hired will make an impact in the newly annexed portion of town. Many of them are ready to get onto the roads and join their brothers and sisters in patrolling the area.

With summer right around the corner, Williams says it's just in time to curb that summer boost in work his department will have.

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