Police seek man in auto theft and crash involving patrol car

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.
Data pix.

LEAWOOD, Kan. -- Police spent Monday morning looking for a thief that led officers on a wild pursuit. The chase prompted one school to cancel classes for the day.

The pursuit started in Cass County, Mo., just before 2 a.m., when deputies tried to stop a stolen pick-up truck pulling a trailer.

The truck raced across the state line into Leawood, where at 149th and Mission, the driver swerved and the trailer smashed into a Leawood patrol car, disabling it. Luckily, the officer was not in the car and not hurt.

At 126th and Mission the trailer lost its axle. The driver then dragged the trailer all the way into the parking lot of Church of the Nativity at 119th and Mission. That's where the driver jumped out and ran in the woods. When police could not find him, Nativity Parish School canceled classes for the day.

"The fact that we had not had apprehension of the suspect," said Maureen Huppe, school principal, "I decided to make the decision to have a late start at 9 a.m., knowing that if I didn't hear anything before then I would cancel school, if they had not caught the guy, simply because he was on our property barefoot and left right out in the woods by our parking lot."

Police have not yet found the driver. Officers say he is not reported to be armed. But they are urging anyone in Leawood who sees someone out of place in their neighborhood to call 911, and officers will come and check it out.

Police say the truck had been reported stolen from a dealership in Grandview, Mo. Police also recovered a number of construction tools that spilled into the church parking lot when the trailer flipped over.

Notice: you are using an outdated browser. Microsoft does not recommend using IE as your default browser. Some features on this website, like video and images, might not work properly. For the best experience, please upgrade your browser.