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Carjackings at Lunds & Byerlys stores in St. Louis Park and Edina last week has sparked an email to Edina residents from Mayor Jim Hovland, who said the recent uptick in crime is "an attack on our community." 

The Edina Police Department said four suspects tried to take control of an occupied vehicle in the the Edina Lunds & Byerly's parking lot near 50th Street and France Avenue, saying the suspects used "force" before good Samaritans jumped in to help and thwarted the attempt. 

One person was injured in the attempted carjacking and was taken to North Memorial Hospital. Two others suffered minor injuries and were treated at the scene. Police do not believe weapons were used.

The four suspects — described as teenagers — fled the area, but not without being spotted by surveillance cameras. On Friday, police released phots of two of the suspects, in addition to a stolen white 2016 GMC Acadia they were using. 

It's unclear if the same four suspects were involved in the carjacking approximately two hours earlier at a St. Louis Park Lunds & Byerlys.

"Our town, and our neighboring towns, have had their security and serenity under attack from mobile criminals who are coming into Edina and other nearby communities to steal private property and in some cases injuring people who resist or assist a victim," Hovland wrote.

"Edina residents have become angry and fearful. The peace and tranquility of our community has been disrupted. At a time when we should be celebrating peace in our families, communities and places of worship, we all worry what each day will bring in the way of criminal activity."

The carjackings in Edina and St. Louis Park come after a rise in carjackings across the Twin Cities this year. Last week, two teens were killed and three others were injured in a crash during a police chase that saw the suspect vehicle split in half. 

According to Robbinsdale police, the group of five was driving a stolen vehicle following a reported armed carjacking in Minneapolis. They were spotted by Robbinsdale police, who began a pursuit before the suspects crashed in Minneapolis. 

Capt. John Kaczmarek with Robbinsdale Police Department told KARE 11, "Carjackings have been on the rise, I think everyone knows that, even in the western suburbs we’ve had an increase in carjackings, violent carjackings. Obviously, we attempt to stop those individuals from performing those."

Edina Police Chief Todd Milburn said in a news release, "We are doing all that we can with agencies across the metro to investigate these crimes and bring those involved to justice."

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Hovland's email encourages residents to keep their eyes peeled, saying, "The more eyes on the street, the sooner we can end this crime spree caused by criminals." 

Anyone with information related to any crime is advised to contact Edina PD at 952-826-1610, or call 911. 

Mayor Jim Hovland's full email to Edina residents

Dear Residents,

One the most important benefits people gain from living in a community is collective security for themselves, their families and their property. Knowing you, your family and your neighborhood are safe and secure allows people to live life the way it is meant to be lived.

Our town, and our neighboring towns, have had their security and serenity under attack from mobile criminals who are coming into Edina and other nearby communities to steal private property and in some cases injuring people who resist or assist a victim. Edina residents have become angry and fearful. The peace and tranquility of our community has been disrupted. At a time when we should be celebrating peace in our families, communities and places of worship, we all worry what each day will bring in the way of criminal activity.

The City Council shares the concerns of residents about what is happening in our town and has been assisting any way we can over the past few weeks. Whatever resources our Police Department wants available, we will facilitate on behalf of our residents. Our Police Department has responded and has been working around the clock on not just responding to emergencies involving criminal behavior, but also working with Police Departments in neighboring cities to share information and security strategies to combat and catch these criminals.

As your Mayor, I want you all to know that the City of Edina and its Police Department is working as hard and fast as we can to apprehend those responsible and to restore peace to our town. I also want you to know that we need your help. The more eyes on the street, the sooner we can end this crime spree caused by criminals. If you have information that you think may be related to a recent crime, please share it with us at 952-826-1610, and don’t hesitate to call 911 if you see suspicious activity. Trust your instincts. Your call will be appreciated.

We need to be both on offense and defense with regard to this criminal activity. On the offensive side, as mentioned above, we are working day and night to apprehend these criminals and thwart future criminal activity. We will look at the latest in technology to see how it can assist us in this effort and we will work closely with our neighboring communities to end this outburst of crime. Mayors, City Managers and Chiefs of Police for Edina and other neighboring communities will be meeting next week to discuss how to cooperatively and collectively deal with this increase in crime.

On the defensive side, you can also help us by:

  • being mindful of your own security
  • locking doors and cars
  • keeping keys and valuables with you
  • keeping your garage door closed and making sure to lock the garage service door.
  • not leaving your garage door opener in a car you need to park outside.

These simple actions make a big difference in your personal vulnerability and the vulnerability of our community as well.

We live in a strong town with resilient and steadfast residents. Edina will persevere over this attack on our community, just as we have persevered over the Great Recession, the COVID-19 pandemic and the effect of civil unrest in a neighboring town. Working together and looking out for each other, coupled with some good police work, residents and the City will shed this pall of fear and anger and return to peacefulness.

Stay strong, stay vigilant and know I give my best to each and every one of you.

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