It seems to be an unfortunate sign of the times, but many bystanders are choosing to record violent criminals in action instead of calling 911 to get help.
It happened Wednesday in Atlanta, where police are frustrated that a number of witnesses used their phones to shoot video instead of calling them when a gunman was firing shots into a high-rise building. Apparently the man had killed a woman before continuing to shoot from a 21st-floor balcony, according to WSBTV.com.
The suspect, Jarvis Jarrette, 32, could be seen jumping from balcony to balcony early Wednesday while still shooting into the building and at the street. Many simply recorded his actions instead of calling police, Atlanta Police Chief Rodney Bryant said.
Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms pleaded with citizens to always “please call 911” rather than posting online.
“We did start receiving phone calls but social media received information — and has received more information, quite frankly — than we have received through our 911 center,” she said from the scene.
“We just ask if you can put down your camera, put down your phone, call 911 and then allow us to do what we do,” she said.
Jarrette “fired a rifle at responding officers,” the Georgia Bureau of Investigation (GBI) said in a release.
“At least one officer returned fire,” the agency said. Jarrette was eventually found dead on a balcony, which the GBI said is being treated as an officer-involved shooting.
“Officers went into the apartment and found one woman dead,” the agency said. She was not identified, but was known to Jarrette, said police.