By Shay O’Connor | WDSU | September 7, 2022
A violent Labor Day weekend in New Orleans with a string of carjackings left people across the city on edge.
The Metropolitan Crime Commission reports at least four carjackings Monday. Including one near Monkey Hill Bar on Magazine Street at about 10 p.m.
NOPD said two vehicles blocked a car in as the suspects demanded the victims’ belongings and vehicle. They got away with the car before crashing it along Jefferson Avenue. NOPD said no arrests have been made so far.
Owners at Monkey Hill said the victims were customers, who had just left their business.
Paulette lives nearby and said, “It is scary. And something has to be done. People need to be held accountable. My neighbor was carjacked at 830 in the morning. It does not matter. Does not matter time or place. Criminals are not being held accountable.”
She and others said the crime is getting way too out of hand.
“I know someone who lives Uptown that was carjacked about four months ago. She pulled forward. Guys hopped out on both sides and sped off with it. You never know when it will happen because it is happening all over the city,” said Richard Butler.
Rafael Goyeneche with the Metropolitan Crime Commission said, “There were four yesterday. Three in the second district within blocks of each other. Within a two-hour period of time.”
He said this could mean that the crimes were committed by the same group. But still too early to tell.
Across the city, carjackings are up by about 12 percent from this same time last year.
“Part of the reason we are seeing this uptick, is the offenders are realizing the numbers are favoring them right now. The NOPD is at a 70-year staffing shortage. So they realize the odds of apprehension favors the offenders,” Goyeneche said.
MCC reports over the past two years, homicides are up by 142%. Shootings are up by 99%. Carjackings are up by 211%. Armed robberies by 28%.
According to the commission’s latest crime report, as of Monday New Orleans has seen 203 homicides, 329 shootings and 379 armed robberies so far this year.
Goyeneche said soon the mayor should be announcing a new crime plan with NOPD. WDSU has reached out to the mayor’s office for details on new changes.