A gunman who killed a woman in a luxury Atlanta high-rise continued shooting from a 21st-floor balcony — but witnesses used their phones to film it for social media rather than call 911, according to frustrated officials.
Gunman Jarvis Jarrette, 32, was seen jumping from balcony to balcony in the early hours Wednesday, still firing into the Atlantic House Midtown as well as at the streets below, police said.
Atlanta Police Chief Rodney Bryant said there were “a number of people who videotaped what was occurring” rather than calling for help, similar to a distressing case days earlier in Philadelphia, where cops say commuters filmed a homeless man raping a woman on a train.
Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms pleaded with locals 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 shooting 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.
When officers arrived, Jarrette was “actively shooting from a balcony” and “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 cops, who were still trying to determine if he also lived in the building or was visiting.
The case comes just days after officials said passengers appeared to have filmed Fiston Ngoy, 35, as he allegedly raped a woman on a commuter train outside Philadelphia, rather than intervening or calling 911.
Despite earlier warnings that they could face charges, Delaware County District Attorney Jack Stollsteimer announced Wednesday that witnesses “should not fear prosecution.”
“Pennsylvania law does not allow for the prosecution of a passenger who may have witnessed a crime,” he said in a statement.
“I will focus the efforts of my office on holding the perpetrator accountable,” he said.