Elderly woman killed in violent robbery; suspect arrested - KMOV.com

Elderly woman killed in violent robbery; suspect arrested

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Michael Hopfer, 34, is accused of robbing a woman, 82, at a Crystal City gas station. The woman later died from her injuries in the robbery. Credit:  SLMPD Michael Hopfer, 34, is accused of robbing a woman, 82, at a Crystal City gas station. The woman later died from her injuries in the robbery. Credit: SLMPD

CRYSTAL CITY, Mo. (KMOV.com) – Police say an elderly woman who was violently robbed at a Crystal City gas station has died from her injuries.

Police say Michael Paul Hopfer, 34, went to Grace Presbyterian Church to ask for financial assistance to buy gas to get to St. Louis. Instead of handing out cash, a church worker arranged to meet him at a nearby BP gas station to pay for $20 worth of gas.  

According to police, Hopfer was waiting outside the door for the church worker when he saw Arlene Marschel, 82, walking out.

“He pushes her down and grabs the wallet, pushes her down and knocks her to the ground and she hits her head and goes unconscious,” said Captain Mike Pruneau of the Crystal City Police Department.

According to Pruneau, Hopfer fled immediately but because the crime was committed in daylight, witnesses saw the entire incident occur. “There was probably four or five witnesses that seen him get in a vehicle and then he took off northbound on 61/67.”

Marschel was rushed by ambulance to Mercy Jefferson Hospital in Crystal City and later transported by helicopter to a hospital in St. Louis. She later died from her injuries.

Hopfer has been arrested and is charged with robbery. He is being held on $200,000 cash-only bond.

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