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Two 12-year-old boys charged with attempted carjacking in Homan Square

Two 12-year-old boys charged in Homan Square carjacking
Two 12-year-old boys charged in Homan Square carjacking 01:43

CHICAGO (CBS) -- A West Side neighborhood was shocked to learn two people tried to carjack someone on their block this week.

But as CBS 2's Tim McNicholas reported Tuesday, neighbors are even more surprised by the age of the suspects.

Harrison (11th) District police said they have arrested two boys in the attempted carjacking on Monday, and both were just 12 years old.

On Monday afternoon in the 3400 block of West Lexington Street, off Homan Avenue in Homan Square, police said the boys had guns when they tried to steal a 31-year-old woman's car and demanded her property.

We have also just learned that woman had a 13-year-old passenger in the car with her.

Shortly after that, officers arrested the pair just a few blocks away near Polk Street and Lawndale Avenue.

Now, they are both charged with felony counts of attempted carjacking.

A couple people living on the block said they're concerned, but they wouldn't talk on camera for fear of retaliation from criminals.

But one man who lives on the block where the carjacking happened, Anthony Scott, says he wanted to speak up.

"Very well could have been my mother. Could have been my sister. Could have been my wife," Scott said. "Something like that just really makes you angry. But it's also saddening - the fact that you have this going on. You have some 12-year-olds out here attempting to do something like that. It's just crazy."

But to police, the suspects' ages might not be as shocking. Early this year, we reported that an 11-year-old was charged with an armed carjacking in Mount Greenwood.

And just this week, Chicago Police Supt. David Brown said police have arrested 545 people for all kinds of auto-related crimes – including carjackings, stolen cars, and other offenses – and he said more than the suspects are under the age of 18.

"We have to invest in our youth, of course – and keep them active, making better decisions, and involved in the community," Brown said Monday. "But we will also hold them accountable when they break the law."

Scott said in his eyes, his block is still a safe place - and he and his neighbors are just being extra-vigilant now. 

Both boys have been charged with one felony count of attempted aggravated vehicular hijacking, and appeared in Juvenile Court on Tuesday.

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