The Lake Saint Louis Police Department is seeking the public’s help in identifying four women involved in a daylight April robbery at the Victoria’s Secret store at the Meadows shopping center where an employee was assaulted.
Police say four women in their 20s entered the store at about 1:38 p.m. on April 26, took $849 worth of clothing and ran out the door without paying.
They eventually got away in a vehicle described as a 2008-2009 gray Dodge Charger parked just outside the store. Police say the vehicle has a damaged front passenger side quarter panel and had no license plates at the time.
Anyone who has any information about possible suspects can call the city’s detective bureau at (636) 625-8018 or the city’s tip line at (636) 625-7995.
Police say an employee saw the women and tried to take items out of the hands of one or two suspects. The employee was grabbed and pushed into a corner, and a suspect may have taken several swings at her. Police say the employee wasn’t hurt.
Capt. Chris DiGiuseppi said his department is releasing information now because police wanted to run down leads on several suspects and because they had to work through red tape to release security photographs and video [below].
DiGiuseppi said the incident is similar to others at Victoria’s Secret stores at other malls, and at other mall stores in the St. Louis region.
“This happens quite frequently not only here but in other venues,” he said. “Frankly we need the public to help us identify these suspects.”
Police are also encouraging the public to contact them if they see suspicious activity. Seeing a vehicle backed into a parking space close to a store, with covered or no license plates, is also suspicious, and DiGiuseppi said police can be contacted to check it out.
DiGiuseppi said police discourage trying to stop thieves caught in the act. If someone notices something suspicious they can call 9-1-1, he said.
“We certainly don’t want anyone to get injured,” he said.
Shoplifting can be a crime of opportunity, or thieves may gravitate toward a particularly popular product or line of clothing. Stealing can cost merchants thousands of dollars in lost merchandise.
“It seems like an ongoing problem that is not going away,” DiGiuseppi said.