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Neighbors on Edge After 2nd Killing in a Week | News

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Neighbors on Edge After 2nd Killing in a Week

James Freeney says he feels confident speaking for others in the Bellevue neighborhood of Macon, where he says crime is out of control.

"I'm 48 years old," says Freeney. "I try not to let it bother me, but yes, I am scared."

He says he's not the only one.

"Bellevue's cool. 'Hell-vue' is not cool," Freeney says. "This is 'Hell-vue' now."

Freeney says he was friends with 54-year-old Shirley Odom, the sixth person killed in Macon this month.

She's the second person killed in the neighborhood this week.

Wednesday night, 58-year-old Vishnu Patel was gunned down during a robbery at the parking lot of Sprint Foods store, less than half a mile away.

"I don't know what's going on in Bellevue today, but it's not good," Freeney says. "It's really not good." 

Macon police say a friend found Odom dead inside her Brown Avenue home, which is off Grand Avenue, near Napier Avenue and Vineville Avenue. Police dispatch says it received the call Saturday at 10:40 p.m.

Bibb County Coroner Leon Jones says it was a homicide, but would not release a cause of death until the autopsy, which is scheduled for Monday morning.

He says Odom's death marks the 19th killing in Macon this year. That's more than all of last year.

Jones called the trend "disturbing."

"It seems like a family is torn apart every week because of murders," Jones said.

Freeney says he doesn't know who would want to kill his friend, especially when he knew her to be kind to others.

He says she once took him in, when he didn't have a place to stay.

"Her doors were open. It didn't matter," Freeney says.

Neighbors say Odom had been living alone the past couple weeks after her husband was sent to jail.

Freeney and others in the neighborhood say the killing has them on edge.

They hope police take action soon and step up patrols in an area, they feel, desperately needs it.

"I hope they catch who did it," Freeney says. "I hope they nail them to the cross."


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