Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Chief Michael Spears says police need the public’s help in cracking down on an increasing number of carjackings, reports the Indianapolis Star. Reports of carjackings jumped 145 percent in the first half of this year compared with last year. The increase comes despite department efforts to attack the crime with targeted patrols and undercover units, especially after the spike became clear after the first three months of the year.
Carjackings are difficult to count accurately because the FBI and most law enforcement agencies lump them in with other types of robberies. Indianapolis homicides are down 25 percent, but robberies (including carjackings) are up 11 percent, aggravated assaults are up 33 percent and residential burglaries are up 3 percent from last year. The department’s main response: hire more officers; 49 have been added to neighborhood beats this year and 50 more will join in September.