Members of Congress Warned to Be Vigilant Amid Rising Crime in Washington, D.C.

Members of Congress have been warned to stay alert amid rising crime in the nation’s capital. The warning comes as the city has seen an increase in robberies, carjackings, and homicides.

The Senate Sergeant-at-Arms reportedly sent a bulletin to Senate chiefs of staff, administrative managers, chief clerks, and staff directors giving advice to reduce the risk of becoming a victim of carjackings, armed robberies, or other criminal activity around the nation’s capital.

“Local authorities note an increase in carjacking incidents in and around Capitol Hill and the District of Columbia,” the bulletin reportedly said, according to Fox News.

The advisory had tips that included securing car doors and windows, hiding valuable items, and parking in a well-lit location near walkways. Other suggestions include never stopping to help a stranger with a broken-down vehicle and reducing walking alone in public.

The executive officer of the Senate also advised Capitol Hill personnel on how to handle being “confronted by a carjacker with a weapon.”

“Your safety is paramount; surrender your car without argument and swiftly leave the area,” the bulletin reportedly read. “Attempt to recall the carjacker’s physical details (gender, race, age, hair/eye color, distinctive features, clothing).”

The warning to members of Congress comes as the city of Washington, D.C. has seen a significant increase in crime in recent months. According to the Metropolitan Police Department, robberies were up 25% in the first half of 2023 compared to the same period last year. Carjackings were up 50%, and homicides were up 10%.

Acting D.C. Police Chief Pamela Smith reportedly said the city already recorded its 200th homicide in 2023, meaning murders could reach levels the area hasn’t seen since the 1990s.

Rep. Henry Cuellar (D-TX) was carjacked by three armed assailants in D.C.’s upscale Navy Yard neighborhood earlier this month.

“I’ve always said when I talk about the border that there is an immigration crisis there. But I would say that when you look at the numbers of murders, rape, assaults at the border — let’s say in Laredo, Texas — I’ve always said that Washington is about two or three times more dangerous, and we certainly see it now,” Cuellar said during an interview with Fox News earlier this month.