CRESTWOOD, Mo. — A man is suspected of kidnapping a cafeteria worker from the parking lot of a Crestwood elementary school Tuesday morning. The victim later was found, police confirmed.

Crestwood police officers responded to Long Elementary School on Sappington Road at 7:15 a.m. for the report of a possible kidnapping.

Witnesses told police that the worker was confronted at the school by an ex-boyfriend. They said the man forced the cafeteria worker in their own car, and they drove off.

Police searched the area, but their investigation led them to believe the man and victim would possibly be in Glen Carbon, Illinois. The Glen Carbon Police Department was notified of the situation, and officers soon found the victim outside of mobile home. The suspect was found inside the home and taken into custody.

Crestwood police said they plan to file charges with the St. Louis County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office.

Students weren’t around during the incident and weren't in danger, Crestwood police added. The school was put into a lockout while the police investigation continued.

The school sent the following letter to parents Tuesday: 

Dear Long Families and Staff,

I am writing with an update regarding the security and police presence during student drop-off at Long Elementary School this morning. Most importantly, let me start by assuring you that no students or staff were ever in any danger this morning during drop-off. Additional security presence was put in place out of an abundance of caution, in response to a domestic incident that took place on the parking lot early this morning.

As soon as district officials were made aware of the situation, we put our lockout procedure in place to secure the building exterior and keep students indoors. As you are aware, it is normal procedure for Long’s doors to always remain locked. In addition, all visitors must check in at the office and present a photo ID. As an additional precaution today, students will remain indoors until the police investigation concludes.

I know it can be alarming to see police at school, but I want to reassure you that your students are safe and will enjoy a normal, uninterrupted day of learning today. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to call or email me directly.

Sincerely,

Dr. Christina Phillips
Principal

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