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Carjacking Arrests Up Thanks To Community Efforts, CPD And Possibly The Weather

CHICAGO (CBS) -- A Twitter storm came Thursday from Chicago Police Superintendent David Brown.

Each tweet announced arrest after arrest of suspected carjackers across the city. There's been an uptick in arrests in recent weeks as well.

But are police really making a dent in the carjacking crisis plaguing the city?

CBS 2 Investigator Megan Hickey reports police and community partners are in agreement that the progress report is good.

Not an quite an A+ but police are making more carjacking arrests and community partners are noticing the impact.

These guardians of the gas station have been manning their posts for about a month.

"To eyewitness in case something goes down, to be the first response in case something goes down," said Marquinn McDonald of the Community Safe Passage Initiative.

Many customers told CBS 2 they have been coming to the pumps when they know there will be someone there to watch over them.

"Between those hours, we've noticed that nothing happens when you have a consistent presence," said McDonald.

But is the community really safer?

"Everybody is involved."

CBS 2 asked Chief of Detectives Brendan Deenihan.

"Those 62 hijacking cases that have been charged, that is a pick up and that is the goal," Deenihan said.

Chief Deenihan said of the 325 carjacking reports made so far this year, his detectives have made 62 arrests. It's an uptick from years past. Carjacking arrests have been historically elusive.

"To your point, why is it more difficult? Because when the squad gets behind them, they turn on the lights, it's not their car, they're not going to pull over," Deenihan said.

He credits a surge in arrests on an influx of officers working on cases more than ever before, treating them with as much attention to detail as a homicide.

"This is a good progress report, but we have a lot of work to do," he said.

He also credits community efforts.

"We cannot complain if we're not gonna get involved," said McDonald.

"That was one small thing, but what a great story," Deenihan said. "I think they're doing a great job."

Carjacking reports are down this month, but many people are pointing out the fact that the weather, not just police work, could be contributing to that.

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