A St. Louis cop fired on a car thief who sideswiped his patrol car, police say.
A St. Louis police officer shot at a car thief who sideswiped his patrol car during a chaotic confrontation this morning downtown, authorities say.
The officer, a 30-year-old with nearly six years experience, apparently didn't hit anyone, and the thief escaped and dumped the stolen vehicle after a short car chase involving backup officers, police say.
The incident began about 9:05 a.m. when an electronic license plate reader alerted police to a stolen car near North Tucker Boulevard and Locust Street. The officer spotted the empty car parked next to the curb and called for backup, police say.
As the officer waited, the suspect ran to the car, jumped in and allegedly drove at the patrol car, police say. The officer was trying to get out of the passenger door, but police say the stolen vehicle clipped the mirror of the patrol car, "pinning the officer as he was exiting the vehicle," according to a news release.
"Fearing for his safety, the officer fired one shot," police say.
The suspect sped off. Other officers picked up the chase but lost him in the streets. They found the car abandoned shortly thereafter in an alley behind the 1100 block of East John Avenue, less than four miles north of the original confrontation.
Police Chief Sam Dotson told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch
the stolen car had slipped away from police several times before the incident.
The suspect is still at large.
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