BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Police have identified one of the two teens arrested Tuesday after a Baltimore Police Department officer was injured when his vehicle was hit by a SUV that had been carjacked the day before.
Packs of teens hitting the streets of Baltimore and committing one brazen crime after another is a problem some feel is out of control.
There’s been more than 200 juveniles arrested each month since January, an average of more than six a day. Police say it’s going to to take everyone to turn this around.
18-year-old Deshawn Heartwell and a 16-year-old male both face charges of armed robbery, first- and second-degree assault, theft, and possession of stolen property, after police say they were involved in a handful of recent crimes.
Both already had a criminal history.
“A number of young people engaged in criminal activity, 13, 14, 15 years old,” says Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh.
The incident comes just days after a mom and her 7-week-old baby were carjacked by another group of teens in the quiet Homeland community.
Weeks before that, teens attacked a man in downtown Baltimore.
Police say juvenile arrests for February, March and April are all up from the previous year, more than 200 arrests per month.
“These carjackings, we’re seeing replica guns, we’re seeing them break into homes, we’re seeing them rob people and it’s normally more than one,” says Baltimore Police spokesman T.J. Smith.
Police say parents need to start questioning their kids.
“We want the parents to know you have to be involved, we want the friends of these children to know you have to be involved,” Smith says.
While a summer curfew went into effect last week, some wonder will it be enough.
“People should be asking ‘where are your children? Where are my children?'” Pugh says.
“It’s up to everyone, not just law enforcement, to disrupt the pattern,” Smith says.
The youth summer curfew went into effect last week and the youth summer job program is about to begin.
Police say they do have summer deployment plans in place.
Police are also searching for additional suspects they believe are involved.
The officer injured Tuesday was later released from the hospital.