Police have warned solo drivers to lock their cars after a spate of carjackings in Geelong, with the latest incident involving an elderly man.
In the region’s fifth carjacking incident in less than two months, a 76-year-old Norlane man was set upon as he waited to turn right onto Station St, at the busy Forster St intersection about 2pm, Monday.
Two men in black hoodies approached the green Toyota ute, with one opening the passenger side door and sitting down beside the terrified victim.
The other man opened the driver’s side door, grabbed the victim and pulled him from the car, before demanding he hand over his wallet.
The thieves then drove off in the man’s car, leaving him to walk home where he then phoned police.
Geelong police Superintendent Craig Gillard condemned the “abhorrent” attack and said the victm did the right thing, given the circumstances.
“At 76 years of age, with two male offenders clearly younger than he is, he’s done exactly the right thing and I commend him for it,” he said.
“I shudder to think that people are going to these lengths to commit crime. What’s underpinning that, well I think that’s a greater discussion for society but it’s incredibly disappointing that people in our community are experiencing these types of offences.”
It follows a string of separate Geelong carjackings in recent months involving a healthcare worker, pregnant woman and a child.
Last month, a heavily pregnant woman was left stranded on the Bellarine Hwy after a gang of teenagers allegedly grabbed her from the car and drove away in it.
Geelong detectives confirmed one teenager was charged this week in relation to the alleged incident, with another brought in for questioning on Tuesday.
The second teenager is yet to be charged, and police are still looking for another two local youths in relation to the alleged incident.
Last month, a Colac grandmother was allegedly bashed by a shirtless man who tried to steal her car after she pulled over to help him.
More recently a, 18-year-old Geelong man was arrested after a five-year-old was driven 40km in a car which was allegedly stolen from the driveway of her family’s home.
Superintendent Gillard said it wasn’t a “bad idea” for people to lock their cars when they were out driving alone.
“I don’t say this is what you have to do in order not to be a victim of crime, because the focus will always remain on the offender, not the victim,” he said.
“But obviously, I ask people to take every step possible to ensure they don’t become a victim of crime, and if they feel safer locking their doors then in my view, that’s not a bad idea.”
The latest victim was left shaken by the attack but was not injured.
The stolen vehicle has not yet been recovered, and is a green 2007 Hilux tray with registration plate 1BX 4DK.
Both men were wearing black hoodies, while one offender was described as about 175cm tall, skinny and aged in his 30s.
Anyone with information is urged to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or at www.crimestoppersvic.com.au
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