(RepublicanView.org) – Criminals in Bellevue, Washington are reportedly intentionally crashing into vehicles to carjack them. Police warned of the trend, saying they had responded to incidents where one driver initiated a minor collision, and when the motorists left their cars to assess and discuss the damage, the carjackings occurred.
In one incident, the victim collided with a Kia carrying two people. When he exited his vehicle, the two people in the Kia did the same – except they had guns and demanded he give them his car. He refused, and the thieves took off empty-handed. Police say, however, that this is not an isolated incident and warned drivers to proceed with caution. Advice includes staying in well-lit areas where possible, avoiding distractions, and staying aware of the surrounding environment.
Crime is a prevalent issue across the United States, with motor thefts skyrocketing in recent years. For instance, the Council on Criminal Justice unveiled an analysis in early 2023 showing that auto thefts in 30 US cities shot up by 59% from 2019 to 2022.
According to CBS News, Dr. Richard Rosenfeld, a criminologist at the University of Missouri-St. Louis, said that improved vehicle security led to a decrease in vehicle thefts for many years. “Newer model cars were accompanied by electronic ignition and locking systems, plus GPS systems,” he said. However, he said this trend started to turn around during 2020’s health emergency.
Data from Chicago revealed that a large number of carjackers are young adults or even teenagers. Statistics from 2021 show that a shocking 41% of these crimes were committed by minors.
The punishment for carjacking varies from state to state. In Texas, it could result in a 20-year jail term, in New York, it ranges from 3.5 to 15 years, and in California, it can result in up to nine years.
Copyright 2023, RepublicanView.org