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Carjacking as a means to “social media fame”?

Monday, Jan 25, 2021

* I’ve been wondering about this because the jacked cars aren’t normally being used for anything else. They’re taken and then dumped, sometimes at the scene of another carjacking. According to the ISP, some of this activity is a bizarre form of online entertainment

In the first 21 days of 2021, there have been 166 carjackings, Deenihan told members of the City Council’s Public Safety Committee on Friday, which held a hearing that lasted more than five hours. Arrests have been made in connection with 65% of those incidents — and most of those facing charges are between 15 and 20 years old.

“Overall, the biggest spike we see right now is people taking cars, driving around for eight or 10 hours, then dumping the car,” Deenihan said.

Some of those thefts are motivated by a desire for social media fame, where videos of teens and young adults speeding in stolen cars while being pursued by police cruisers draw thousands of views, Illinois State Police Col. David Byrd said.

The online videos would appear to explain the high arrest rate.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

28 Comments
  1. - Rabid - Monday, Jan 25, 21 @ 11:16 am:

    The kids are just playing grand theft auto for real


  2. - Lester Holt’s Mustache - Monday, Jan 25, 21 @ 11:16 am:

    If we can find and arrest insurrectionists through social media, surely they can find these goofs the same way.


  3. - NIU Grad - Monday, Jan 25, 21 @ 11:17 am:

    There’s a Simpsons clip for everything: “Videotaping this crime spree is the best idea we’ve ever had!”

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KsdzKnJNAC8


  4. - 1st Ward - Monday, Jan 25, 21 @ 11:28 am:

    The e-learning instructors are doing a great job teaching Grand Theft Auto. Las Vegas is opening their schools due to the number of suicides by junior high/high schoolers over the past year in the district. Hopefully the CTU is reading the tea leaves. Alot less support from their own members this go-round then in 2019 to strike.


  5. - Rutro - Monday, Jan 25, 21 @ 11:38 am:

    Sad and scary time to live in Chicago.


  6. - Red Ranger - Monday, Jan 25, 21 @ 11:41 am:

    Unusually high amount of empty phrases and buzz words from Chicago Alderman on this subject. Creating a task force to study the issue and make recommendations can’t be far away


  7. - Ok - Monday, Jan 25, 21 @ 11:49 am:

    The VR sets are broken, but the keys still work and the windows are open.


  8. - Just Me 2 - Monday, Jan 25, 21 @ 11:56 am:

    I once interned for a State’s Attorney and my biggest takeaway was what he told me on my first day: “Never underestimate the stupidity of criminals.”


  9. - Chicagonk - Monday, Jan 25, 21 @ 12:05 pm:

    Brendan Reilly made the good point that Chicago has 1 functional helicopter with out-of-date technology while LA has 17 and New York has 8. Since police chases are too dangerous to conduct, the state and the city need to use other technology (social media being one technology) to slow the spike in carjackings.


  10. - Bemidji - Monday, Jan 25, 21 @ 12:08 pm:

    792 homicides in Chicago in 2020, good thing the mayor is a former federal prosecutor like Scott Drury.


  11. - DuPage Saint - Monday, Jan 25, 21 @ 12:09 pm:

    I don’t know if I believe the number of arrests. How many charged and how many convicted? I swear I was not this cynical years ago.


  12. - Epoc - Monday, Jan 25, 21 @ 12:23 pm:

    1st Ward-that NYT article was absurd and acknowledged it’s impossible to prove a causal link between these suicides and remote learning, especially because they are occuring in the midst of a deadly pandemic that is taking lives and causing economic devastation. All ages have seen an increase in mental health crises. Not to mention teen suicides have been rising for the last decade.

    In CPS students dont have access to mental health services because CPS has refused to invest in them and what is available is only a result of CTU striking. Millions of American have gone to virtual therapy and these resources should be available to students. Not to mention there are better ways to do remote learning than forcing kids to stare at zoom screens 8hrs a day like CPS does.

    Finally, folks need to realize that in-person school is just a dangerous remote. Extra-curriculars don’t exist. Socialization isn’t allowed. And students in-person are still learning through a screen because most of the students are still learning remotely at home. If you are in-person, you are literally watching your teacher teach on a laptop on your desk. Thats why the majority of patents who signed up to return ended up pulling their kids. The current plan is both dangerous and unneccessary.


  13. - depressed in politics - Monday, Jan 25, 21 @ 12:42 pm:

    This is a frolic by kids, not hardened criminals. If someone demands your car, give it to them, it’ll get returned eventually. Thats why we have insurance. If they didn’t run, they wouldn’t be chased. Anyone who thinks we should issue anything other than a civil ordinance violation is out of step. The CPD should immediately stop pursuing these arrests, because all it’ll do is add these kids into the criminal justice system.


  14. - Precinct Captain - Monday, Jan 25, 21 @ 12:42 pm:

    ==Some of those thefts are motivated by a desire for social media fame, where videos of teens and young adults speeding in stolen cars while being pursued by police cruisers draw thousands of views, Illinois State Police Col. David Byrd said.==

    Some? What is the percentage?


  15. - Amalia - Monday, Jan 25, 21 @ 12:45 pm:

    carjacking with guns is not just funning around. saw some reference to legislation that did not pass in the House, but passed in the Senate, that would have increased the penalty for using a gun when carjacking. someone used an AK-47 for such in his area, re Harry Osterman. yes, they are doing their little drives, but they are also terrifying people, in Chicago and in the burbs and some stealing cars for other purposes.


  16. - efficiency - Monday, Jan 25, 21 @ 12:45 pm:

    High arrest rate?


  17. - ArchPundit - Monday, Jan 25, 21 @ 12:54 pm:

    It’s nice to see that a wide variety of Americans have taken up the practice of filming their crimes. It’s something that brings us together.

    === “Never underestimate the stupidity of criminals.”

    A great read though a bit dated now, is Homicide: A Year on the Killing Streets of Baltimore. The show was based on it but it was written by David Simon (The Wire) and one of the recurrent themes are the detectives pointing out that crime makes you stupid.


  18. - TR - Monday, Jan 25, 21 @ 1:27 pm:

    @Amalia, I think this is the report your referring to about legislation that passed the senate but stalled out:

    https://www.chicagotribune.com/opinion/editorials/ct-edit-carjacking-chicago-juveniles-police-20210122-ffujd7vshfb7db3q42jfifzeji-story.html


  19. - Just Another Anon - Monday, Jan 25, 21 @ 1:39 pm:

    I’m 90% certain that depressed in politics is trolling. Alternatively, maybe we should all go “borrow” his car, wallet and phone.


  20. - Telly - Monday, Jan 25, 21 @ 1:50 pm:

    == The only cases where harm occurs is when the juveniles try to stop the owners from giving up their cars. ==

    I think I get where you’re going —pulling out a gun to battle it out with the carjackers usually doesn’t end well. But c’mon man, having a gun pointed in your face ain’t harmless.


  21. - Cool Papa Bell - Monday, Jan 25, 21 @ 2:22 pm:

    @ depressed in politics

    =This is a frolic by kids, not hardened criminals.. The CPD should immediately stop pursuing these arrests, because all it’ll do is add these kids into the criminal justice system.=

    I can’t tell if you are sincere here or not. But I do feel your off base… These kids took something of high value, with force, and then often drive it in a manner that could take a life and you want them to be written a notice to appear? Sorry man/woman… No way. Pursue (safely - by air or gps or by car) and prosecute.

    That’s not lifting a pack of gum from the corner bodega.

    Get to the kid before he commits grand theft if you want to keep them out of the criminal justice system. But they made a decision that has to have consequences.


  22. - BCOSEC - Monday, Jan 25, 21 @ 2:53 pm:

    Under the no cash bail statute set to go into effect 1/1/2023, it appears the court would not have the discretion to order a person arrested for carjacking detained, unless the court found, after a hearing, that the person constituted a specific, identifiable threat to a specific person or persons. As these are usually random acts of violence, might be a good argument that the defendant does not fall into that category? States Attorney Association made that argument. Hopefully given time, the bill will be cleaned up.


  23. - Product of the'60's - Monday, Jan 25, 21 @ 3:04 pm:

    Living in the suburbs of Chicago I always enjoyed going into the city for events/restaurants/seeing people, and while I tried to take the train as often as possible never worried if I decided to drive. By the news reports the last 2-3 yrs have seen carjacking go from an occasional occurrence to one that happens ANY where, at ANY time,at ANY type of vehicle, ANYWHERE in the city. Covid keeps me out of the city now, but unless this is stemmed to minor occurrences, it will keep me out of going into Chicago to spend my money when things open up.


  24. - Miso - Monday, Jan 25, 21 @ 3:08 pm:

    Anyone who thinks we should issue anything other than a civil ordinance violation is out of step.

    Tell that to the slain fireman.


  25. - DuPage - Monday, Jan 25, 21 @ 3:13 pm:

    @depressed in politics

    Some “kids” carjacked a woman at a Wendy’s in Aurora.
    She gave up her car and was running away from them. They then shot her in the back and drove off. You think all they deserve is a ticket? I think they deserve a long prison sentence.


  26. - TinyDancer(FKASue) - Monday, Jan 25, 21 @ 3:43 pm:

    =The increase in carjackings has been seen not just in Chicago, but the suburbs and nationwide, he said. “It’s everywhere,” Deenihan said.=

    It’s not just Chicago.


  27. - Amalia - Monday, Jan 25, 21 @ 5:28 pm:

    @TR thanks for that link. think I heard it over the air as well. silly decisions.


  28. - Anonymous - Monday, Jan 25, 21 @ 6:28 pm:

    Tiny Dancer- Who do you think are doing them in the Suburbs. Yea the teens from Westside and Southern Cook County.


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