Kasim Reed said the high level of crime and violence in Atlanta is a "national embarrassment", and he plans to crack down on crime if he is reelected mayor.
Reed is seeking reelection as mayor of Atlanta on Nov. 2. His first two terms as mayor began in 2010.
The mayoral candidate spoke by phone with Audacity Atlanta's Maria Boynton during the Grand Opening of his campaign headquarters at 568 14th Street in northwest Atlanta.
Reed says the level of crime and violence is "tearing Atlanta apart". He added, "right now 20 percent of the citizens of Atlanta want to leave the city."
Reed has raised over $2 million for his campaign so far. His campaign continues hosting high-profile events, including a private reception and fundraiser hosted by attorney Precious Anderson (pictured) at her Atlanta home on Wednesday.
Reed told the invited guests that if he is reelected, he plans to hire 750 new police officers.
He also told the intimate gathering that he is going to make sure women feel safer and that people in general feel safer in Atlanta.
Also, he will reopen City Hall where workers will be accessible to the residents of Atlanta.
He also discussed his plan to make more women millionaires through his Women Entrepreneurship Initiative that he started when he was mayor.
Some Atlantans say they hope Reed will make the Katherine Janness case a top priority when he's reelected mayor.
Katherine Janness and her dog, Bowie, were brutally stabbed in Piedmont Park on June 28. Their bodies were discovered by Janness' girlfriend, Emma Clark, about 50 yards inside the 10th Street gate just after 1 a.m.
"There was a slice on her face, like in an X pattern on her face," said Clark, pictured right. "And there was a deep cut to her throat; it was cut all the way to the bone."
Janness, 40, had been stabbed multiple times and a word was carved into her body.
"It's a very frightening crime," Fulton County District Attorney Fani T. Willis told The Washington Post.
Evidence suggests the killer spent time with the body after the murder.
"And that is strange," Willis said. "Most people commit a murder and want to get the hell away because they don't want to be caught."
Janness' killing stood out among the city's 110 homicides this year. She was Atlanta's first white homicide victim of 2021.
Willis, who started the job in January, faced a daunting backlog of 12,000 arrests from last year that have not resulted in formal charges.
Most of the city's homicides are committed by repeat offenders who were released from jail early due to overcrowding and staffing issues.
The city has convened 2 grand juries to sift through the evidence and return indictments. However, Willis said it could take "years" to clear the backlog of criminal cases.