Several smash-and-grab thefts reported overnight in St. Louis region

2013-01-08T06:16:00Z 2013-07-19T08:38:05Z Several smash-and-grab thefts reported overnight in St. Louis regionFROM STAFF REPORTS

Police are investigating if several smash-and-grab thefts overnight in the St. Louis area are connected. 

Two Subway restaurants on Olive Boulevard, in University City and Olivette, were hit by thieves just after midnight.

Thieves also broke into a convenience store on Union Boulevard near Wabada Avenue in St. Louis by ramming a vehicle into the store's front glass door.

Police from Pine Lawn pursued an SUV suspected in at least one of break-ins; the vehicle crashed in the 5800 block of Maffitt Avenue in St. Louis and the suspects got away.

Police found stolen merchandise, including purses, cigarettes and cell phones, and bolt cutters and other burglary tools inside the SUV. 

Pine Lawn Police Sgt. Steven Blakeney said police believe the stolen goods had been taken from the convenience store at Union and Wabada shortly before 4 a.m.

Pine Lawn police got involved when the SUV, a red Jeep Cherokee reported stolen in St. Louis County, came racing along the 6200 block of Natural Bridge Avenue at about 5:30 a.m. today.

Pine Lawn police pursued the Jeep into the city, where it crashed on Maffitt, he said. The Jeep twice tried to run a Pine Lawn police car off the road, Blakeney said.

No one was injured, he said.

Mo Sagakhaneh owns the Subway sandwich shop in Olivette that was hit by thieves. Sagakhaneh said they threw a concrete block through glass to get inside, which triggered an alarm sensor. The thieves took nothing, he said. He said the restaurant just opened Dec. 22 and he hadn't had a chance to have his grand opening yet.

Erik Lunsford of the Post-Dispatch contributed to this report.

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