3 dead after suspects crash during police chase in south St. Louis

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by Sarah Heath / KMOV.com

KMOV.com

Posted on September 20, 2012 at 3:21 AM

Updated Thursday, Oct 24 at 5:31 AM

Fatal Police Pursuit

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ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KMOV)—Three suspects were killed early Thursday morning after they wrecked while leading police on a high-speed chase in south St. Louis.

 

Authorities say several calls came in around 11 p.m. on Wednesday for shots fired in the 2300 block of Minnesota. Several hours later, more calls came in for shots being fired at a home on Minnesota.

As officers arrived on the scene at Shenandoah and California around 2:40 a.m., they spotted a dark-colored Nissan Maxima with multiple people inside. They said someone inside the car was waiving a handgun.

When the suspects spotted the officers, they drove off.

Officers pursued the vehicle through south St. Louis. During the short pursuit, the suspects sped away from officers and crashed.

Authorities said the driver had apparently lost control, crossed the center line and crashed into a row of concrete planters in the 800 block of S. Grand Boulevard.

The impact of the crash caused the vehicle to split into two parts and scatter debris over a large section of roadway.

The two larger pieces were found about 100 feet apart.

According to police, three people – Lamont Cross, 22, Gregory Franklin, 23, and Dasha Rhodes, 20 - were pronounced dead at the scene. Another male suspect was transported to an area hospital with unknown injuries.

The surviving suspect, a 21-year-old man, was transported to the hospital in critical condition.

Police said it took investigators and emergency crews hours to collect evidence and clear the wreckage.

St. Louis police Captain Michael Sack described the crash scene as “horrific.”

A weapon was recovered along the route of the chase. It is still undetermined if it was used in the reported shootings. Authorities are also investigating reports of a rifle being used in the incident.

Police closed the Grand Bridge at one point during the chase. The bridge has since reopened.

 

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