Fleeing suspects collide with Sauget police car in two-state chase

AP file photo

Suspects crashed into a Sauget police cruiser Monday as they led officers on a two-state chase.

Sauget Police Chief Patrick Delaney said the suspects were wanted out of Missouri for allegedly stealing copper from a vacant house.

The pursuit started about 12:20 p.m. and lasted for about an hour.

The suspects, two men and a woman whose identities have not been revealed by police because they have not yet been formally charged, crossed into Illinois where they went to a warehouse at 1401 Mississipi Ave.

The long building straddles the border between Sauget and East St. Louis. It contains a recycling company called Metro Illinois Auto Core where the suspects apparently were trying to sell the copper they’re accused of taking.

“We thought we had them hemmed in but they were able to get away by driving over some concrete parking blocks,” Delaney said. “They were driving a Chrysler PT Cruiser which is a pretty low slung vehicle and it appeared they were stuck.”

Delaney said the suspects managed to rock their vehicle back and forth to get it free. Then they rammed a Sauget police car that had them blocked in.

“Thank goodness for the steel push bumper on our police car,” Delaney said. “It took the majority of the impact. There car was a lot worse off. But, somehow, they managed to make it another 12 miles or so.”

The suspects got on the Poplar Street Bridge to head back into Missouri where, with a St. Louis police helicopter overhead and heavy traffic on the bridge, Sauget and Cahokia police broke off the pursuit out of fear that innocent motorists could be hurt.

Two of the suspects jumped out of their car in midtown St. Louis and fled on foot.

The other suspect continued on in the vehicle, eventually crashing into another car in north St. Louis.

All three suspects were eventually captured. The one who hit the second car suffered minor injuries.

Neither the Sauget officer nor the civilian motorist in north St. Louis hit by the fleeing suspect vehicle were injured.