Representative Henry Cuellar, a veteran Texas Democrat, was carjacked in Washington on Monday night, but he said he was not injured and his car was later recovered.
(Bloomberg) — Representative Henry Cuellar, a veteran Texas Democrat, was carjacked in Washington on Monday night, but he said he was not injured and his car was later recovered.
Cuellar, 68, said he was parking his car when he was approached by three men in masks who were all holding guns. He said he does not think they knew who he was.
“They took my sushi,” along with his phone and dashboard camera, he told reporters Tuesday morning, adding “I’m good.”
Cuellar noted that he has a black belt in martial arts but he didn’t think it was a good idea to “take on three punks with guns.”
The vehicle and phone were tracked and later recovered by police, he said, adding that he keeps an Apple AirTag in the car. The robbery occurred in the city’s Navy Yard neighborhood, according to the District of Columbia’s Metropolitan Police.
Noting that other members of Congress live nearby, Cuellar said he would leave it to Capitol Police to determine if any increase in security is needed.
First elected to Congress in 2004, Cuellar represents a South Texas district that extends from the eastern outskirts of San Antonio to Laredo and the Mexican border.
As in many urban areas, crime in the nation’s capital has risen sharply, generating concern and alarm among the city’s residents. Motor vehicle thefts have soared 106% so far this year compared to the same period in 2022, to 5,398 incidents in 2023 from 2,619 last year, according to the Metropolitan Police. Robberies have shot up 68% so in the same period to 2,624 cases, while homicides have surged 37% to 215.
In February, Representative Angie Craig, a Minnesota Democrat, was attacked in an elevator of her Washington apartment house. A man punched her in the face and grabbed her neck. She threw a cup of hot coffee at him and escaped. A suspect was later arrested.
The rise of crime in the District has led to demands by congressional Republicans for more control over how it is governed.
–With assistance from Billy House, Steven T. Dennis and Zach C. Cohen.
(Updates with new details on sushi, phone, camera in first five grafs and attributes directly to Cuellar instead of chief of staff)
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