Police departments share information to catch car thieves

Police departments share information to catch car thieves

Marlen Waller, Derrell Howell and Trevonn Hunter were each charged for allegedly stealing multiple vehicles from Johnny Londoff Chevrolet in Florissant.

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by KMOV.com Staff

KMOV.com

Posted on October 18, 2012 at 7:35 PM

FLORRISANT (KMOV) -- Police from several agencies used a convenient tool to catch suspects who are accused of robbing a local car dealership.

Florissant police recently arrested three suspects in connection to a car theft at Johnny Londoff Chevrolet in north St. Louis County, and another man accused of robbery. The three car theft suspects do not live in Florissant, but rather in the City of St. Louis. Police also captured another person accused of robbery from Ballwin.

Police say criminals often pick targets in other towns that are off a busy street or highway because it is easy to get in and out. One officer said criminals do not have an advantage if they commit crimes in other towns.

"We have information-sharing means with detectives across the St. Louis area," said Andy Haarmann of the Florissant police.

When thieves hit two car dealerships last week, there were more than two police departments involved with the investigation. Detectives started comparing information on previous crimes in other cities. Sharing such information is a key step in any investigation.

"If we see a trend developing in Florissant, if we see the start of a pattern we can ask the highway patrol to include that in their daily emails and those emails go out to all the area police departments," Haarmann said.

The Highway Patrol operates the Missouri Information Analysis Center (MIAC), an online information-sharing resource that often includes mug shots, crime information and surveillance video.

"A lot of crimes are solved just by networking and knowing who's working on what," Haarmann said.

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