INDIANAPOLIS — Police in Indianapolis are searching for an armed carjacker who they say attacked a woman outside of an assisted living center in broad daylight on the southeast side.
Fortunately, police say the woman was able to give them a clear clue to work with.
“I was just in shock, but I was really scared. Really, really scared,” said Megan Whisler.
She was sitting in her 2005 Ford Five Hundred Monday morning around 10 in the parking lot of an assisted living center while her mom was inside visiting with a relative.
Within minutes, a stranger armed with a gun came up to the driver’s side window.
“I couldn’t even form a thought. So I turned off my car and he said, ‘Scoot over.’ I think he wanted me to get in the passenger’s seat. don’t know if he was up to something more sinister or if he just wanted me to not make a scene and not scream. But I didn’t want to go anywhere with him,” said Whisler.
Instead, she got out of the car — and gave him the keys.
“And he just snatched my phone out of my hand, and he got in my car. And I literally just watched him.”
The man then took off in her car.
When police investigated, they tracked Whisler’s phone and found it about 15 minutes away. The suspect threw it out in a neighborhood.
However, Whisler says once she got her phone back she realized the suspect left a big clue on it.
“I looked and was like, ‘Oh, my God.’ That’s the person, that’s the person that literally robbed me today and took my car.”
Picture of carjacking suspect, courtesy of Megan Whisler
The photo above was on Whisler’s phone when she got it back. She thinks her phone was making a noise as she was pinging it after the carjacking. She figures the sound might have scared him, and when he grabbed the phone to investigate — he accidentally snapped a selfie.
Daniel Rosenberg is with Crime Stoppers. He knows carjacking have been on the rise in Indianapolis.
“We need to make sure somebody like this isn’t wandering around on our streets,” said Rosenberg.
Whisler isn’t worried about her car or the belongings inside of it. She says she just wants the carjacker stopped before he strikes again.
“I consider myself very lucky that I made it away with my life and everything that he took is replaceable,” she said. “Who’s to say the next time he does this it’s not the same outcome?”
Investigators say it’s too early to say if the suspect is connected to other carjackings or other crimes in the area.
If you recognize the man in the picture or the car — call Crime Stoppers at 317-262-TIPS (8477.)