A maintenance man charged with brutally murdering a tenant. A sex offender who slept in the hallways. A dead body left in an apartment for days, found covered in flies.
These are just a few disturbing tales of the living conditions in apartments owned by Sen. Raphael Warnock’s (D., Ga.) church, gathered from interviews with residents and hundreds of pages of Atlanta Police Department, Fire Department, and court records obtained by the Washington Free Beacon.
Atlanta police and firefighters have been called to Columbia Tower and the Columbia Senior Residences at MLK Village in Atlanta hundreds of times since 2020, the records show. Responding officers have been met with corpses and people trapped in elevators, as well as fights, burglaries, and car thefts. Both buildings are owned by the Ebenezer Baptist Church, where Warnock serves as senior pastor.
The Free Beacon also learned that Columbia Tower management hired a convicted murderer now charged with killing a female tenant who lived with him at Columbia Senior Residences, which is just across the street from the apartment building.
“They hired a guy who killed his girlfriend. He was the maintenance guy who was living in the senior building and he had a record already,” a resident told the Free Beacon in October. “Why would you hire a person like that who has keys to the building? I understand second chances, but this person already had a background in murdering someone, and you give him keys to our apartment?”
The records could pose problems for Warnock, who is seeking to defeat Republican challenger Herschel Walker amid rising crime. Crime is one of Atlanta voters’ main concerns heading into next week’s midterm elections, polls show. Homicides have increased in Atlanta by at least 60 percent since 2019, according to 11Alive News, citing Atlanta Police Department crime data.
Warnock has advocated for softer crime policies, including ending cash bail. He has criticized the American prison system as a “scandal on the soul of America,” and called to end “mass incarceration.” Warnock has also championed safe housing during his time in the Senate, saying earlier this year that “housing is dignity.”