Amidst a skyrocketing number of carjacking incidents this year, Washington, D.C.’s Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) responded to a series of 13 violent carjacking robberies by arresting a 17-year-old boy and three girls aged 13, 14, and 17. The news of the arrests has come as a relief to a community severely affected by the escalating rate of carjackings in the nation’s capital.
The teenagers were connected to a five-day carjacking crime spree. According to reports, their victims were physically assaulted and then the group fled in a getaway car which was eventually wrecked into a ditch near the Washington VA Medical Center in northeast D.C. Along the way, the car careened off North Capitol Street Northeast, rammed into the back of a red car, and sent it spinning before the occupants ran away on foot.
Statistics compiled by the MPD reveal that 169 carjackings with significant involvement of firearms have been reported this year alone. Twenty-one people have been arrested in association with the incidents, of which a majority, 57%, were juveniles.
The arrests came as a shock to Thomas Hailu, the father of a 6-year-old whose car was rammed. He said, “Carjacking is getting out of control and these incidents occur time and again.”
MPD’s Carjacking Task Force has taken steps to tackle the issue, including increased patrols in areas with a history of carjackings and launching a public awareness campaign. However, more needs to be done to bring peace of mind to a community that is worried about their safety.
This heartbreaking incident serves as an important reminder for people in D.C. to be on guard and work together to put an end to carjackings in the area.