Last week, Maplewood Chief of Police Steven Kruse warned not to leave unattended cars warming up because they’re an easy target for thieves. On Sunday one was stolen, Kruse reported. Kruse said in a followup, on Monday, that on Sunday, Dec. 11, an employee of Jack in the Box restaurant at 7520 Manchester Road started her car at 6:30 a.m before leaving work. She left it unattended on the parking lot while it was warming.
The Maplewood Police Department cautions residents that as the weather gets colder, especially in the mornings, not to leave their cars unattended with the engine running to warm it up. The department released this warning:
During the winter, there is an increase in motor vehicle thefts when people leave their cars running unattended in their driveway or on the street, or when they leave their car running when they go into a store. Organized groups will come into an area looking for the opportunity to steal cars in this manner. Many times, three or four thieves are already riding in a stolen car, looking for the chance to steal multiple unattended autos. If you see a stranger drive off with your car, it’s safer just to let it go and report it to the police department.
A St. Louis man has been charged with shooting out car windows in Maplewood, as well as Shrewsbury, Clayton and St. Louis, with charges pending in Rock Hill and Webster Groves for the same crime, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Andre Armstrong, 19, told police he and some friends used a BB gun to damage parked cars in mid-November, according to court documents.
Curtis Hill, 72, of St. Louis, cashed a check for $2,884 on Oct. 13 at the US Bank branch inside Schnucks in Brentwood; he was charged with forgery. According to court and police records, Hill told Brentwood police he was approached in St. Louis by a man who identified himself only has Jacque.
A car hit a utility pole on Big Bend in Maplewood early Saturday morning, Nov. 26, which caused the road to be closed between Manchester and Flora for the day. A witness to the damage sent a picture to 40 South. She said the driver, who was DWI, hit the pole so hard that the bottom six feet was taken out. She said the car flipped and spun on its roof, which was then then hit by a second car, also driven by a DWI driver, coming from the opposite direction.
A Maplewood man was beaten, kidnapped and held for ransom for three days by four men until he was released to his parents by his kidnappers for $27,000, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. One of the suspected kidnappers is Todd Beckman, president and CEO of BAM Brands, which owns Tanco, Xist Fitness and Massage Luxe, according to the BAM website. Beckman and three others were arrested Thursday and appeared Friday morning in U.S. District Court in St. Louis on a single kidnapping charge, according to the Post-Dispatch.
Maplewood Police Department ticketed 14 motorists for not wearing seat belts during the Nov. 25 Click It or Ticket mobilization, according to a release from the department. Law enforcement agencies throughout Missouri participated in this statewide effort to get more motorists to buckle up — and save more lives. During the enforcement effort, officers issued a total of 49 traffic citations including: 14 seat belt tickets; 7 speeding tickets; and 28 other traffic violations. According to the release: Despite evidence proving the benefits of wearing a seat belt, nearly one in five Missouri motorists are still not making it click.
On-duty Maplewood firefighters helped the Maplewood Richmond Heights Boy Scouts Troop 362 collect food donations on Nov. 19 for Scout for Food. Nearly 500 boxes of canned goods and other foods were collected, the firefighters reported on Facebook.
Brian Blocker, 33, of St. Louis, was charged with stealing money (under $500) from the office at Reeds American Table. According to court and police records, the restaurant manager at Reeds American Table discovered that money was missing from the office when the business was closed. Blocker confessed to entering the office on May 26 without permission and taking the money. Bond was set at $15,000.
According to residents of Maplewood’s Greenwood neighborhood, multiple car windows were shot out with a pellet gun the night of Nov. 13. One described it as a hundred windows shot. Maplewood police on Friday said three arrests have been made in connection with the damaged windows. One man has been charged.
The Maplewood Police Department will be joining efforts with statewide law enforcement on Nov. 25 for an aggressive Click It Or Ticket effort to get more motorists to buckle up — and save more lives, according to a press release from the department. Despite evidence proving the benefits of wearing a seat belt, 20 percent of Missouri motorists are still not making it click. Even worse, 60 percent of individuals killed in crashes in Missouri were not wearing seat belts, according to the release. “Local motorists should be prepared for stepped up Click It Or Ticket enforcement,” said Maplewood Chief of Police Steve Kruse.
Robinette Patrice Chandler, 35, and James Edward Gordon, 55, both of St. Louis, were charged with stealing eyeglass frames at Crown Vision Center in Maplewood Commons on September 3. According to court and police records, while Chandler distracted an employee, Gordon hid two sets of eyeglass frames in his pocket. The two then left the store without making any purchase. When an employee realized the frames were missing she called Maplewood police.