Metro-East News

Thief demands keys, steals car in Althoff parking lot, police say

A file photo of Althoff Catholic High School.
A file photo of Althoff Catholic High School. BND

Belleville police are investigating after a vehicle was reported stolen in a school parking lot Monday night.

Master Sgt. Rob Thomason issued a news release through the department’s Facebook page on Tuesday morning that said police were looking for one suspect and the car, a 2009 black Chevrolet Impala.

Police said they responded to Althoff Catholic High School before 7 p.m. Monday on West Main Street after they received a report that a young man approached another person in the parking lot and demanded the keys to their car. Police said the suspect implied that he had a weapon, but no one was injured as a result. According to the school’s website, a sports banquet was scheduled Monday night around the time the carjacking was reported.

Althoff Catholic High School Principal Dave Harris said between 400 and 500 people were inside the school cafeteria for the event when the car was stolen. Harris said it happened around 6:45 p.m., 15 minutes after the banquet had started. He said the school notified Belleville police.

Police described the suspect as a black male either in his late teens or early 20s, standing 5-foot-5 to 5-foot-9, medium build, wearing a black hooded jacket. The suspect was last seen driving out of the school parking lot onto Frank Scott Parkway toward Illinois 161.

The Impala has an Illinois registration identified by police as E983866.

The investigation was ongoing, police said Tuesday morning.

Harris said a letter would be sent out to parents on Tuesday detailing what happened and how the school responded as well as precautionary measures.

“We want to make sure that our students are aware that whether it’s here at campus or at the mall to always be in groups. Always go together and know your surroundings,” Harris said.

Anyone with information about the suspect or the location of the car is asked to contact the Belleville Police Department at 618-234-1212 or call CrimeStoppers at 866-371-8477.