Metro-East News

Man gunned down after beer spill at Sauget convenience store

By George Pawlaczyk and Brian Brueggemann

A can of beer that slipped out of a 12- pack at about 5:20 a.m. Saturday morning and broke open on the ground causing it to spray a man’s shoe was enough to spark a point-blank, execution-style shooting, said Sauget Police Chief Patrick Sauget.

“The beer may have sprayed on his shoe. He just walked up to the victim and shot him in the chest,” Sauget said, referring to the gunman being sought Saturday by the Major Case Squad of Greater St. Louis.

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The victim, 26-year-old Oscar C. Carbajal of St. Louis, was pronounced dead at a local hospital.

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Sauget provided this description of what started out as a simple purchase just as dawn was beginning to break:

Three men pulled up in the same car to the Phillips 66 convenience store on Illinois 3 and went to the teller. At this early hour, the teller sits behind protective glass, and customers must slide money through a window.

Just as they completed their purchase, the suspect walked up and said, “Give me one of those beers,” but one of the three men replied, “Give me money, money, money.” Then the 12-pack slipped from the buyer’s grip, causing the spray that angered the suspect.

“You gonna buy me new shoes?” the suspect replied.

Sauget said the suspect, described as a black male, abruptly returned to his own vehicle, parked beside a gas pump, where he had prepaid and pumped $10 worth of gas. The car was described as a dark blue Ford Fusion between a 2011 and a 2013 model.

The three friends decided to purchase another 12 pack and were in the process of doing that, Sauget said, when the suspect walked up to Carbajal and shot him once. Carbajal was not the man who dropped the beer.

Sauget said detectives from the Major Case Squad of Greater St. Louis, which is under the command of Detective Kerry Andrews of the O’Fallon Police Department, were in the process of examining surveillance video from the convenience store.

“I’m confident we’ll be able to quickly identify the shooter. Someone will know him,” Sauget said.,

Carbajal reportedly was shot with a .45-caliber handgun and was pronounced dead at a local hospital.

Police asked that anyone with information call CrimeStoppers at (866) 371-8477.

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