ViewPoint: Crime doesn't attract business

September 18, 2008

The state tourism folks spent a good portion of last week in Albany, and we're glad they didn't arrive sooner. If they had come to town on Monday instead of Tuesday, they'd have seen news reports of two senseless acts of gunfire that have yet to be solved.

The worst was the shooting of a veterans Cab early Sunday morning at Gordon Avenue and South Jefferson Street.

Cabbie Thomas Laster stopped at the traffic light, when some hooligan started shooting at the cab. His passenger, Patricia Parks, was shot in the back during the robbery attempt.

Luckily, both Laster and Parks survived, which is more than can be said for the glass of the taxi cab. The images of this incident are striking. We're glad our guests didn't see them.

About 24 hours earlier, APD was called out to Big Daddy's Lounge where somebody,went on a shooting binge, and put bullets through several cars. Luckily, no one was hit by the flying lead.

You remember the shooting incident at Merry Acres in July when Charlie Henderson was shot as a burglar by a motel patron. APD arrested and charged the shooter, then they wanted to arrest Henderson, who got out of the hospital before they could. He later turned himself in.

Is it coincidence that he was charged with breaking into cars two nights before he was shot?

All this crime and violence is poison for a town's reputation, and that's bad for every Dougherty Countian.

We also see that it can lead to very bad things for folks who insist on engaging in criminal activity. Henderson is very lucky the bullet that is still in his body wasn't an inch or two off, or we wouldn't be talking about him in the present tense.

In Valdosta, also not immune to crime, a teenager decided he'd participate in a home invasion.

He made it to the hospital, where doctors saved his misguided life, after his intended victim beat him senseless, and stabbed him in the lung.

We think it's only a matter of time before we announce that a person has been killed in the commission of a crime. People are fed up with crime, and if it continues its present path, citizens will do what they deem necessary to protect themselves...

Criminals need to understand that their crime can be hazardous to their own health. Maybe then the rest of us can remake Albany's image as the Good Life City... not DODGE CITY.