DENVER (KDVR) — Carjackings are at a 20-year record high in Colorado, and the vast majority happen in just two counties.
The Pueblo Police Department has four people in custody following an armed carjacking in the city. Mother of two Chanise Sena was shot twice. She narrowly avoided paralysis but is still confined to a walker, catheter and wheelchair while she recovers.
She claims it is the 12-year-old suspect who pulled the trigger. All four suspects were under 17.
The incident is far from rare as an armed carjacking happens at least once a day in Colorado. Carjackings have skyrocketed in Colorado in the last 10 years, according to Colorado Bureau of Investigation data.
In 2011, there were 84 total armed carjackings throughout the state. By 2021, that had swollen to 490 – a fivefold increase in 10 years.
The yearly number of carjackings had been climbing before the pandemic, reaching nearly 300 in 2018. The increase sped up in 2020, however, with a 41% spike from 2019 to 2020 and a 26% spike from 2020 to 2021.
Carjackings went down in 2022 but still maintained the second-highest number in 20 years with 454 through the year.
Pueblo County does have its share of carjackings, but the overwhelming share happens around Denver and Aurora.
Just over 75% of all the state’s carjackings from 2018 to the present happened in Adams and Denver counties.
Denver alone accounts for more carjackings than any other county. Nearly half – 45% – happened in Denver. Another 31% happened in Adams County.
Further south, El Paso County accounted for 13% of carjackings. Pueblo County had 7%. Most Colorado counties have not experienced a carjacking. Only 17 counties have one recorded at all in the last five years.