Teen, 17, Arrested in Armed Carjacking of FBI Agent Near Capitol Hill

Teen, 17, Arrested in Armed Carjacking of FBI Agent Near Capitol Hill
U.S. Capitol building in Washington on Nov. 8, 2023. (Madalina Vasiliu/The Epoch Times)
Katabella Roberts
A teenager has been arrested in relation to the armed carjacking of an FBI agent near Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. in November, according to the Metropolitan Police Department (MPD).

Devonta Lynch, 17, was arrested for his alleged actions during the incident, which took place on Nov. 29 in the 100 block of 12th St. NE, detectives from MPD’s Carjacking Task Force and the FBI Washington Field Office Violent Crimes Task Force said in a Dec. 5 statement.

Mr. Lynch, of southeast D.C., is being charged as an adult under Title 16 with Armed Carjacking (Gun), police said.

The case remains under investigation, officials added.

Mr. Lynch is allegedly one of two suspects who took part in the carjacking of the federal agent, who has not been identified and was off-duty at the time of the carjacking.

According to an initial statement from police, officers were called to the scene at about 3:45 p.m., where the FBI agent told officials that two suspects had approached the agent at gunpoint while they were stepping out of their vehicle.

The suspects subsequently fled the scene in the victim’s vehicle, which was recovered shortly after the incident, in the 1000 block of 15th St. SE, less than a mile from where the car was taken, officials said.

No further information has been released regarding the second suspect and officials have not yet provided further details regarding the lead-up to and aftermath of the carjacking.

The MPD and FBI are currently offering a joint reward of up to $20,000 to anyone who provides information that leads to the arrest and conviction of the second individual responsible for the carjacking of the FBI agent.

Mr. Lynch’s arrest comes as violent crime rates have surged across Washington, D.C. in the past year, while carjackings have skyrocketed.

Violent Crime Soars

According to police data, violent crimes are up by 40 percent year over year, with homicides up by 23 percent, robberies up by 69 percent, and arson up by 125 percent.

As of Dec. 5, there have been 924 carjackings in 2023, compared to 447 last year, of which 77 percent involved firearms. Around 54 percent of carjacking arrests involve juveniles, according to the data.

In October, Rep. Henry Cuellar (D-Texas) was also carjacked about a mile away from the Capitol, while he was attempting to park his vehicle outside of his Washington apartment in Navy Yard.

Mr. Cuellar said the carjacking was carried out by three armed assailants and his vehicle was later recovered about two miles away in the Anacostia neighborhood.

The significant rise in carjackings and auto thefts prompted Mayor Muriel Bowser’s government to launch an initiative in November under which police are handing out auto-tracking devices to residents in certain neighborhoods.

Only residents in Police Service Areas with the highest levels of vehicle theft are eligible to take part in the pilot program, which aims to assist victims in locating and recovering stolen vehicles and holding those responsible accountable, according to a press release from the mayor’s office.

Residents living in 106, which includes Navy Yard and part of Capitol Hill; 501, which includes part of NoMa; 502, which includes Eckington and Edgewood; and 603, 605, and 606 in Southeast are eligible to receive the free tracking devices, according to Ms. Bowser.

The latest pilot program follows MPD’s “expanded wheel-lock distribution program,” under which free steering wheel locks were handed out to Kia and Hyundai owners.