MURFREESBORO, Tenn. (WKRN) – It’s a Top 10 list many apartment complexes in Murfreesboro would rather not be on.
Police have identified the complexes where they spend considerable amounts of time responding to calls. Now, the city and police are cracking down and holding the apartment owners accountable.
College Grove Apartments on New Lascassas Highway boast about being the ‘Best in the Boro,’ but depending on whom you asked that could be debated.
“We want make sure the quality of life for those apartment complexes is safe for the people that live there because they feel secure,” said Murfreesboro Police Chief Karl Durr.
College Grove tops the list, police have responded there 220 times since the beginning of the year, for everything from shots fired calls, theft, to burglary.
The Vie Apartments, formerly Raiders Ridge, comes in a close second.
Officers have been called there 187 times since January.
City leaders met with apartment managers Tuesday holding them accountable for what takes place on their property.
“A lot of times people call for the police to fix the problem, but you know we’re only one partner in problem solving,” Durr said. “We talked about it takes those partnerships to address the issues. Those issues need to be addressed before they call the police, so we need to do prevention than responding.”
What’s more concerning to the police chief is the number of shot fired calls in these complexes where many Middle Tennessee State University students call home.
“The fear of crime is almost something worse than crime itself,” the chief said.
Police have responded to seven shots fired calls at Campus Villa, six at both The Vie and University Ridge; 46 total at the Top 10 apartment complexes near the university.
“We’ve been proactive in patrol; we’re trying to identify those individuals out there making this a dangerous place,” said Durr. “When I say dangerous place, you know, this is a very safe community but there are incidences where this is happening; and it’s localized and we need to make that a safer place.”
Chief Durr said often times police have a difficult time getting information from witnesses because they are afraid to talk.
“A lot of times some things are witnessed and seen, but go unspoken so I would urge people if you see something, say something. We need all the information we can get to bring these people to justice,” he said.
The chief said the police can’t curb the violence alone. He added it’s going to take the city, MTSU, the apartment complexes and the community working together.
The city has suggested apartment complexes implementing lease provisions, terminating leases for drug and violence offenses and towing vehicles of non-residents.
Some of the complexes have already added extra security and checking IDs of people who drive onto the property.