Detroit police chief talks about nearly getting carjacked

Chief James Craig says man jumped out of car, approached his driver's side on Jefferson Avenue

DETROIT – If you need proof that anyone can be a victim of crime, just ask Detroit Police Chief James Craig.

Recently, he was almost carjacked.

"An individual jumped out of his car while I was stopped at a light and approached my driver's side. I recognized what it was and got out of harm's way," said Craig.

He was not in his personal car. The chief was in an unmarked police car. It happened around 8:30 p.m. on Jefferson Avenue a few weeks ago.

Craig put his foot on the gas and took off.

The person responsible is still out there.

"Certainly it was unfortunate we couldn't identify the car later. But it was a situation that worked out. I am more concerned about the real victims out there," he said.

The numbers are startling. So far this year there have been 586 carjackings in the city. That's down from 589 at this time last year.

To put the numbers in perspective, about two people are carjacked each day on the streets of Detroit.

Well before his close call the chief put reducing carjackings as a top priority. He set up an anti-carjacking task force.

Story: DPD unveils anti-carjacking initiative

Craig speaks to the community all the time about how to stay safe.

"Just be aware. That's simply it. Be aware. Certainly I always caution residents if they got to get gas at night and people are loitering around the gas station. You might want to go to another gas station or wait until the morning," said the chief.