Robberies near Decatur school prompt tighter security

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DECATUR, Ga. - New security measures are now in place at Decatur High School after a string of armed robberies.

The suspects are targeting high school students with iPhones.

Channel 2's Rachel Stockman spoke to the father of one of the victims.

At Decatur High School this weekend, crews were seen clearing trees to improve visibility and safety after a string of students was robbed in the area.

"My son identified it as a semi-automatic pistol," said John Beaumont.

He says his son was cased for his cellphone by a group while leaving a football game.

"Two of them broke off from that group and started following my son and his friend after my son's friend pulled out his iPhone," Beaumont said.

The concerned father says the gun was put to the back of his son's friend, near Renfroe Middle School.

After the suspects got away with the iPhone, the two freshmen boys ran to a Decatur apartment.

They wanted to get the police as quickly as possible, but neither one of them had a phone, Beaumont said.

Police say there were two other cases also involving guns and iPhones, leaving students on edge.

"You know, I walk home safely. I have to be on edge after the game. That is just sort of an extra element of fear that wasn't there before," one student said.

Decatur police believe the suspects may be a group of students from another school.

The superintendent of city schools of Decatur sent a letter out, outlining increased security measures. Adding another school resource officer is among those requests, along with improving lighting in the area.

"It's good to have the awareness, but whether it will impact an event like this, I don't think so," Beaumont said.

The school will also ban bags during games.

Police say they sent a GBI sketch out to local law enforcement and are close to making arrests.