Bottoms issues new crackdown on bars, clubs amid escalating violence

Atlanta issues new crackdown on bars, clubs amid escalating violence

ATLANTA — Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms issued a new plan to deal with escalating crime in the city Monday especially at Atlanta’s bars and nightclubs.

Just this past weekend, three people were shot outside the busy Buckhead nightclub district and seven people were injured in a stabbing incident in west Midtown. In October, a man was killed outside the same club district in west Midtown.

Bottoms has said that the problem stems from people from out of town partying in Atlanta due to lax COVID-19 restrictions.

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Channel 2′s Tyisha Fernandes learned that certain Atlanta nightclub owners have been deliberately putting out flyers in other states, inviting out-of-towners to come to club in Atlanta.

Bottoms said mayors from other cities contacted her before New Year’s Eve to make sure she knew about the fliers.

“There are people traveling to Atlanta,” Bottoms said. “Someone told me about an advertisement in Philadelphia for New Year’s Eve parties in Atlanta.”

The latest string of violent episodes over the New Year’s holiday prompted Bottoms to put out her crime plan, which was already in progress.

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Many business owners believe that the out-of-town guests at these parties contributed to the stabbing incident at Republic Lounge in west Midtown on New Year’s Eve.

Fernandes spoke to a business owner who said there were thousands of people in the streets that night, going in and out of the club.

Part of Bottoms’ plan is to shut down restaurants that are operating like nightclubs and to shut down businesses that aren’t respecting capacity limits, crack down on nuisance properties and increased gang enforcement.

“To all of our bar and nightclub owners, we’re putting you on notice today,” Bottoms said.

According to the Governor’s office, it will only take two violations for the city to be able to shut clubs down. The mayor said this will be a joint effort between police, fire departments and the city to make sure these clubs and lounges follow the rules.

Three people shot at Buckhead intersection