Shoplifting suspects crash stolen car and flee, spurring school lockdown


In a seven-minute string of events Friday, police believe three suspects fleeing the mall after shoplifting spurred a lockdown at Bierbaum Elementary when they crashed their stolen car near the school and, in between, may have hit another car.

Two of the three suspects, a male and a female, are still at large. A third suspect, a female, was arrested after a search around Bierbaum, said Officer Benjamin Granda, spokesman for the St. Louis County Police Department.

Police believe the trio fled the South County Center mall after stealing from Macy’s around 12:11 p.m. Their getaway car was a 2013 Hyundai Santa Fe sport-utility vehicle that had been reported stolen out of St. Louis city.

They crashed the Santa Fe at 12:18 p.m. at the intersection of Reavis Barracks and Union Road, near Bierbaum at 20150 Union Road.

They abandoned the car and fled on foot, which caused a soft lockdown at Bierbaum that lasted about an hour. Students were never in any danger and were kept inside during the soft lockdown, Principal Nathan Burch wrote in emails to parents.

Before the suspects wrecked their car, they might have caused another car crash separate from the one that wrecked their stolen car at Reavis. In that crash, an SUV struck a car at Interstate 55 and Lindbergh Boulevard and then left the scene. No injuries were reported in the incident.

Police described the two suspects they did not find as a black male, tall with skinny build wearing a red hooded sweatshirt and a black female with a blonde wig or hair extensions.