A cure for car jackings?

The last two years have seen a terrific rise in carjackings in the Twin Cities. Loose numbers for the trend in the city of Minneapolis come in at 84 for 2019, 388 and 610 in 2020 and 2021 respectively. Whereas the crime was mainly centered in the city, now offenders are venturing out into the suburbs. Whereas the perpetrators were mostly unarmed, now they are mostly armed and often inflicting bodily injury.

Out of the 610 incidents there are certainly a portion inflicted by career criminals. But at our holiday potluck last week the conversation focused on the number of juveniles involved in the activity. One story concerned a recent incident in a wealthy third tier suburb carried out in broad daylight. When the car was apprehended later in the day, all the occupants were under fifteen years of age. Here are a few other reports which follow the same lines.

The day after Frey’s press conference (12/16), two teens pleaded guilty to multiple carjackings across the Twin Cities; in a separate incident, a pair of juvenile suspects were arrested in association with violent attempted carjackings outside two Lunds & Byerlys locations. One suspect is still at large. 

Bring Me the News

As it has progressed to a larger geography, residents have organized to express their concern. Just over a week ago a community crime prevention meeting drew three hundred participants in a suburb abutting the city of Minneapolis. The mayors of five western suburbs compiled a statement and action list to address the issue. The role of the county attorney was questioned.

“We think the message being sent to criminals is you can commit this (kind of) crime this afternoon and be out by this evening,” he said. “From what I understand from the police officers, that is not far from the truth. I think we want the county attorney’s office to relook at that.”

https://www.eplocalnews.org/2021/12/18/suburban-mayors-meet-to-develop-response-to-
increasing-crime/

We’ve come full circle. The county attorneys had loosened penalties for low level crime in response to demands for social justice. Kids from disadvantaged neighborhoods get in the system, the reasoning went, and then they are hindered from progressing up through the regular channels of entry level jobs and on up the chain to self-sufficiency. Take formal charges off the table, and the balance will be set right. Unfortunately, releasing the penalty for low level offences has increased the number of kids getting into the carjacking business 6-fold, not decreased it.

Perhaps Minneapolitans would tolerate this increase in crime and see it as a penalty paid in order meet their social justice ambitions. But it is already clear that there is little appetite for such things further afield. More importantly, the loss of life amongst these budding ne’er do wells has been tragic.

Two teens are dead and three others in the hospital Thursday morning after Robbinsdale police say a reportedly stolen SUV crashed in Minneapolis.

The incident first began around 6 p.m. Wednesday (12/8) night, when a Mercedes SUV was stolen in an armed carjacking near the area of 12th Avenue North and Fremont Avenue in Minneapolis. ….

Police said five people were inside the fleeing SUV, all of them teens. One occupant was declared dead at the scene of the crash, and the other four were taken to nearby hospitals, where Robbinsdale police confirm that a second person died. Robbinsdale police captain John Kaczmarek told KARE 11 that the other three suffered significant injuries but are “up and talking” in the hospital.

MSN

As people puzzle over this escalating situation many of the same solutions are bantered about. But I say look to those suffering the greatest loss. To raise up a child to fifteen or sixteen years of age and then see them, on a whim, end up in a car which veers off the road and takes their life, must be a serious blow. These are the folks with the most to lose. A group of parents who have recently lost a child to this nonsense must have ideas on how different circumstances could have pulled their loved one in a different direction.

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