Innocent Woman Killed in Pursuit
NEAR WESTON, Mo. — Friends and family are mourning the death of a 54-year-old Platte County woman killed at the end of a crime spree that spanned two states and more than 150 miles. Antwinette Holtsclaw was driving home to Weston Monday when a thief speeding in a stolen car turned into her path, causing a deadly crash on Missouri Highway 92.
Holtsclaw’s brother says Antwinette was known as a hard worker. She owned a couple of farms in Platte County and operated her own real estate agency. All of this while battling lupus and undergoing dialysis treatments three times a week.
“She’s one of the toughest people I’ve ever known,” said longtime friend Shana Sharp.
She calls Holtsclaw an inspiration. No matter the challenges she faced in life, Sharp says Holtsclaw kept pushing on with a smile on her face. Sharp says Holtsclaw suffered from lupus and couldn’t walk more than 10 feet on her own. Yet she hated to ask for help and Sharp says she strived to remain fiercely independent.
“She was a fighter,” Sharp said. “She was an example to all of us, not to give in. No matter how big your life’s challenges are, don’t give in.
But on Monday, as Holtsclaw drove down Missouri Highway 92 near Tracy, a carjacking suspect being pursued by state troopers apparently lost control of the stolen car he was driving and turned into Holtsclaw’s path. The crash killed them both. Holtsclaw’s brother says he helped care for more than 50 animals on his sister’s farm, near the crash scene
“She has some acreage with horses, donkeys, goats, a couple of pot-bellied pigs,” Sharp said. “She’s very compassionate about her animals. She didn’t have any children so they were her babies.”
State troopers say the driver of the stolen car, 27-year-old Randy Hartline of Iowa, is suspected in six separate car thefts, carjackings or attempted carjackings reported Monday across two states. Still, Holtsclaw’s brother questions whether the pursuit was necessary. Sharp says all she knows is that her good friend is gone.
“It wasn’t worth taking my friend’s life,” Sharp said. “I don’t have an opinion about whether the police should have been pursuing him or not. It’s hard for me to say.”
Sharp also says she knows her friend is in heaven now. With a perfect body, no pain and no sorrow.