Armed robbery attacks on food delivery drivers becoming more fre -

Armed robbery attacks on food delivery drivers becoming more frequent in South City

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Gravois Park neighborhood. Credit: KMOV Gravois Park neighborhood. Credit: KMOV

Police are searching for four thieves who held a female pizza delivery driver at gunpoint late Wednesday night.

It happened in the Gravois Park neighborhood near the intersection of Pennsylvania Ave. and Winnebago St. just before midnight. Police say the suspects took the driver's keys, cell phone, money and pizza. However, police recovered her vehicle at the scene. 

Lakisha Stanburry has lived in the Gravois Park neighborhood for the last 20 years. She is concerned this crime has happened so close to her home,

"That's like the next block over from me," said Stanburry. 

Police say when the incident occurred, four males surrounded the delivery driver's car. One suspect pointed a gun at the driver, while the other three stole her belongings. They fled on foot. The driver was physically unharmed and ditched her car, running one street over to call police. 

"That's honestly scary because you don't know if that woman might have had a child or mother at home that was taking care of or grandmother or anything like that," said Stanburry.

News 4 spoke with a neighbor who witnessed everything unfold Wednesday night, but she did not want to go on camera. She was open about sharing what she saw. She said that she along with the other neighbors on her block talked and no one ordered the pizza. This witness says they all believe these suspects put in a fake order to intentionally lure the delivery driver to Pennsylvania Ave. 

Stanburry says some delivery restaurants will refuse her drop off service because of where she lives. "

They were like, 'Okay well unfortunately due to the nature of what's going on in your neighborhood, we can't deliver you're going to have to come to us,'" said Stanburry. 

Delivery drivers have been a target often in South City:

- On October 31, a delivery driver was attacked in Benton Park. Police say 3-4 suspects punched the driver and stole his cell phone and money.

-On August 17, an Imo's driver was held at gunpoint in Tower Grove East. 

-On August 6, a Chinese food delivery driver was shot in the leg in an attempted carjacking in Tower Grove South.

Ed Wallace is a new resident to the area and hopes this crime doesn't affect future food deliveries.

"It's kind of eye-opening for anything to happen over here," said Wallace, "We order pizza all the time here, and we've never had that issue."

St. Louis police are still working to determine if these incidents are connected. Police tell News 4, just like after any violent crime, patrols will be increased in the area. 

News 4 checked with the Papa John's and Domino's locations on Grand Ave. and both say they are operating as usual.

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