ST. LOUIS — Police are investigating after a woman had her car stolen after a minor rear-end crash at an intersection on the Delmar Loop.
A security alert from the Washington University police department said the incident happened at Skinker and Delmar boulevards at around 4:15 Thursday afternoon.
While stopped at the light, the 60-year-old driver said someone bumped into the back of her car. She pulled over, and as she got out of her vehicle, a person in the other car pushed her out of the way and stole her car.
When the victim grabbed a door handle, the suspect began to accelerate. As the suspect continued to drive, he abruptly swerved which caused the victim to lose her grip and fall to the ground. She was then hit by her car.
Emergency responders treated the woman at the scene but she refused further treatment.
Both cars were last seen heading east on Delmar Boulevard.
The St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department is investigating.
Florissant police warned drivers about a similar auto theft scheme that starts with a fender bender earlier this week.
Police said there's been a few auto thefts that start out with a car bumping into the back of another vehicle. Per usual, both parties got out to inspect the damage. While that's going on, someone from the second vehicle hops out and steals the victim's vehicle.
"Well you have a million things going through your mind, it doesn't happen often," Officer Steven Michael said.
Police recommend the following if you feel uncomfortable or uneasy during an accident:
- Stay in your car with the door locked
- Call 911
- If you can, take a picture or note the make, model and license plate number of the vehicle that hit you and the driver's description
- If the vehicle leaves the scene, note which direction it traveled
- Note anything unique about the vehicle, a cracked windshield, missing hubcaps, bumper stickers or any other damage
- Cracking a window should be sufficient to talk with the other driver at first until police arrive