Hill Talk: Carjackings Disturb Neighborhood Calm

Posted December 18, 2009 at 3:10pm

A community meeting is planned for 6:30 tonight at the Options Public Charter School to discuss a spate of carjackings that has some Capitol Hill residents concerned. Ward 6 Councilmember Tommy Wells (D) will attend, as well as Advisory Neighborhood commissioners and First District Metropolitan Police Department Commander David Kamperin.

“The thing that is most frightening to our neighborhood is that this can happen in the middle of the day,— said ANC 6A Commissioner Mary Beatty, who worked with Wells’ office to plan the meeting.

Beatty said the similarity of the attacks leads neighbors to believe that they are all related, and possibly involving a ring of professionals.

“They usually approach from all sides. There will be four or five of the carjackers. All of them will jump out at the same time and surround the victim,— Beatty said, “hold the gun to the victim’s head.—

The fact that most of the attackers seem to be in their late teens, Beatty said, does not preclude that this may be a professional operation.

“Whenever we make an arrests, we look at similarities,— Kamperin said. But, he added, “I don’t know offhand if the carjacking task force has made any connections.—

“Obviously, it’s a concern to us,— Kamperin said. “There’s an upward trend in the area. We’ve put additional resources down there — not only in uniform but in plainclothes.—

“What Tommy wants to do is make sure that we hear from the residents,— said Charles Allen, Wells’ chief of staff. “And also hear from the police. And what he wants is to have a plan of action that comes out of this meeting,—

The incidents have all occurred between 12th and 14th streets and between D and F streets Northeast. In one particularly brazen incident, a mother and her two children were carjacked at gunpoint in the early evening. According to Beatty, only one arrest has been made and just one car has been recovered.

The Options Public Charter School is at 1375 E St. NE.