by Caleb Groves
MARIETTA– The Cobb District Attorney reported lower violent crime rates since last year and updated attendees on the Family Advocacy Center at at Tuesday’s town hall meeting at the Tim D. Lee Senior Center.
District Attorney Flynn D. Broady Jr. discussed the decline in violent crime, stating that Cobb is now the safest county in the Atlanta area.
Alongside lower crime rates, Broady mentioned lower domestic violence rates with five fatalities reported, down from 10 in 2022 and 12 in 2021. Though there is improvement, many of these cases are reported after numerous incidents of domestic violence. Once reported, only about half of the victims prosecute their abusers, Broady said.
“Almost every single domestic violence case, they don’t call the first time they’ve been hit. They don’t call the second, third, fourth, fifth, sixth, even seventh time,” said Broady. “ It’s usually the eighth time and beyond are the first time that they feel this person is actually going to kill them.” Then they finally call.”
However, there are still challenges the County is facing, such as elder abuse and tackling the uptick in gang recruitment of children as young as 10 and 11, Broady said.
Family Advocacy Center
The center is scheduled to open in late October to early November. It is meant to be a hub for victims of abuse to get help and resources through private partners with mental health support, food and shelter, Broady said.
He wants the facility to allow families to escape abusers and prevent childhood trauma to keep them out of the justice system.
Georgia is one of a few states that do not have a victim service center, making this a priority for Broady. Recently, he visited numerous advocacy centers across the U.S. to get inspiration.
Early Intervention/ Alternative Resolution Court and Drug Court
Instead of increasing fines for simple possession charges, the DA is now focusing on early intervention for addicts, such as treatment and mental health facilities.
“When I look at our violent offenders, almost every single one of them started somewhere in the criminal justice system with a simple possession charge and didn’t get the help they needed, said Broady.
On top of swift early intervention programs, the DA is making the programs more affordable for those struggling financially.
During the Q&A, the audience of 60 brought up topics such as increased anti-semitism in Cobb, the redistricting controversy of District 2 and a lawsuit over Senate Bill 92.
Broady weighed in on the topics.
Recent increases in anti-semitism in Cobb have been a concern of Broady’s but the participants of the anti-semitic rally in July were careful not to infringe on the Jewish Community Center’s property, so there was no basis for prosecution.
“We need to speak up, we need to have our voices heard and we need to come together as a community to drown out those other voices,” Broady said.
Recently, Broady joined a lawsuit against Senate Bill 92, claiming it is unconstitutional under Georgia law.
The bill creates a commission that can remove elected District Attorneys.
He believes the bill will allow for the state to impeach DAs like himself if they are not prosecuting enough drug cases, making alternatives to incarceration more difficult.
It is a part of Broady’s goal as DA to find alternatives to the justice system to help treat drug charges like treatment programs, but fewer prosecutions that lead to incarceration could be used by the commission to remove treatment-oriented prosecutors.
Caleb Groves is a Journalism student at Kennesaw State University, where he is a junior.
Originally from Minnesota, Caleb moved to Georgia with his family, where he now lives in Woodstock with his Father, Stepmom and numerous pets.
When he is not in writing, in class or coaching rock climbing, he spends his time listening to music and rock climbing both indoors and out