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'People Are Terrified;' Chicago Carjacking Crisis Prompts City Hall To Hold Virtual Meetings To Find Solutions

CHICAGO (CBS) -- Some people living in Chicago said they're simply fed up with carjacking after carjacking.

CBS 2 has reported on the crisis for months. On Friday, those concerned took their issues directly to City Hall. CBS 2's Meredith Barack reports on inconsistencies in the numbers police presented during a news conference Thursday.

Chicago Police Superintendent David Brown proudly announced a massive number of carjacking arrests so far this year. It turns out that claim is simply not true.

"This year, 2021, there have been 144 vehicle hijackings. Chicago Police have arrested 104 offenders for these crimes this year," Brown said.

But CPD's own public data said otherwise, showing just three carjacking and aggravated carjacking arrests from January 1st through the 18th this year. When questioned about the discrepancy in numbers, a CPD spokesperson said it is because they combined several crimes involving cars, including when a person simply goes into a car without permission.

If someone is arrested for stealing from an unlocked car, it will fall under that category, which is then added to the arrest total. With at least four carjackings on Thursday alone, aldermen, residents, and victims from across the city met for hours Friday in a virtual public safety meeting. Ald. Michelle Harris (8th) was there.

"I didn't live in a very violent district. These carjackings have made it a very terrible place to live. If I could say that. People are terrified. They're terrified to be out," Harris said.

The meeting, showcasing that carjackings are an issue no matter the zip code.

"This is really Chicago crying for help right now," said Chicago resident Sam Royko.


Many are asking for more to be done to both literally and figuratively stop the crime.

"We've got to start shutting down temporarily some of the accessibility, whether it's temporary jersey walls to shut off accessibility so people can't get in and get out so quickly," Harris said.

"They want these people held accountable for their actions, nothing more than, less than less. You people are paying taxes in these neighborhoods. They've been living here for 40, 50 years. They deserve to be protected," added South Side resident Marcello Siggers.

CBS 2 requested to sit down interview with Superintendent Brown for clarification about the numbers. There is a virtual town hall in less than hour, to discuss the carjacking crisis.

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