WASHINGTON — Approaching a driver, demanding the keys and speeding away in the car is no petty crime, and it carries severe penalties.
But that does not seem to matter in Prince George’s County, which led Maryland in the highest number of carjackings in 2012.
There were 183 such crimes in 2012 countywide, according to the most recent state crime report.
In comparison, just 10 carjackings were reported in Montgomery County and statewide, there were 473 carjackings reported.
The Prince George’s County Police Department investigated most of those cases. Forty-one other cases were handled but the county’s other municipal departments.
But the number of carjackings the Prince George’s County Police Department investigated in 2013 dropped by almost 40 percent to just 87 such crimes, according to the department. And since 2010, the number of these crimes has dropped by 58 percent.
Violent crime overall has dropped by one-third since 2010, the department says.
According to state officials, drivers are often targeted in parking lots, gas stations or driveways.