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Local, federal officials vow collaboration on Piedmont Park murder case

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By JOSH MORGAN

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    ATLANTA, GA (WGCL) — Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis, Sheriff Patrick Labat, and acting United States Attorney Kurt Erskine spoke at a news conference Thursday, vowing collaboration with Atlanta Police to help solve the murder of Katie Janness at Piedmont Park

Wills said her department has received several calls about the case and wanted to speak publicly to let the public know that her office is working together with every agency to help solve the crime.

Willis said her message to the public is that the DA, sheriff and federal government have come together to help find the killer.

“We know that this is an important crime and we know that the public is watching and waiting.”

She said the county is providing numerous resources to assist in the investigation.

“Not only has Atlanta Police put patrols out there, but so have the Fulton County Sheriff’s Office.”

Speaking of the sheriff, Fulton County Sheriff Patrick Labat spoke at length about new crime mitigation efforts the county has instituted recently. Labat spoke about increased patrols in problem areas, with more deputies on the streets.

While there was not a specific update in the case offered at the news conference, both Labat and Willis did share one consistent message to those listening.

“Behave in a way that is safe.”

The two are asking people to take precautions when going to Piedmont Park. They advised going with multiple people rather than going alone, and to take every precaution necessary to stay safe.

On Wednesday, Atlanta Police released the 911 call from Emma Clark, seconds after she found her life partner, Janness, unresponsive in the park.

Earlier this week, police released photos and video of people who they say may have witnessed something the night Janness was murdered.

Police say the people in the video and images are not considered suspects, and APD hopes they are willing to come forward to share anything they may know about the gruesome murder of Katie Janness.

If anyone was in the area around the time of the murder, or if anyone knows someone in these photos, they are asked to contact Atlanta Police Homicide Investigators or Crime Stoppers.

Emma Clark says she found her life-partner, Katie, stabbed to death that night. She went looking, pinging Katie’s phone after she didn’t respond to calls or texts.

Emma says she saw others in the park when she made the gruesome discovery. One of those people can be heard clearly on the 911 call when she was speaking with

“I know somebody walked up on it right after I did,” Clark said. “I guess, because he came running out too. If anybody else saw something before I did. Because there are photos of people 20 minutes before I got here and there’s people walking right past the entrance.”

CBS46 will continue to follow this story and provide updates as we learn more from law enforcement officials.

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