HAMDEN, Conn. (WTNH) – Following a violent carjacking last week in Hamden, neighbors are worried about their safety. Town officials held a public safety forum Friday night for residents to voice their concerns. 

Last Thursday morning, police said two suspects walked up to the man, pulled a gun, and demanded he give them his car before a struggle ensued and the man was shot. The suspects then took off in the victim’s car. 

“For some reason, gas stations have become a hotspot for crime. Probably because it’s where people get in and out of their car. They might leave their valuables or pocketbook or a wallet on a car seat. They’re going to fuel their cars and they just don’t realize that it only takes a matter of seconds for them to become a victim of a crime,” Tim Wydra, Hamden acting police chief, said.

“These people are afraid to walk out of their doors. Every neighborhood matters. We have children that can’t even play in the streets right now because their families are afraid of being shot,” one Hamden neighbor said. 

Some asked why there aren’t more police officers patrolling the area to prevent crimes. Interim police chief Tim Wydra said they are ramping up recruitment efforts. 

“Recruitment has been difficult. It’s a national trend and it’s a state trend and it’s affecting us here in Hamden a little bit,” he said. 

10 officers were hired recently. The department now has 92 out of 103 positions filled.