Cars drive through Academy Sports in St. Peters and O’Fallon IL

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“It’s always a concern for law enforcement when groups go out looking for guns.”

ST. PETERS, Mo. – Police are investigating after suspects drove vehicles into two Academy sports venues in the St. Louis area early Wednesday and attempted to access gun holsters.

The St. Peters Police Department said a silver Hyundai broke into the front door of the Sports Academy at 5214 I-70 North Outer Road at approximately 5:30 a.m. The suspects ran to the holster and took tried to shoot through the glass, but failed.

They then drove off in a red Volkswagen Jetta. The police do not have information on the license plate of the vehicle.

Police say the Hyundai was stolen in the city of St. Louis.

“It’s always a concern for law enforcement when groups go out looking for firearms. It’s really concerning,” officer. said Melissa Doss of St. Peters Police. “When you use a stolen vehicle, it takes away a lot of evidence that we would normally have.”

The department shared surveillance video on its Facebook page in hopes the public could identify the suspects.

Anyone with information about the identity of the suspects should call 636-278-2222 or 636-278-1000 to remain anonymous.

Also on Wednesday, the O’Fallon Illinois Police Department said they responded at 4:22 a.m. to a burglar alarm at the Sports Academy at 1574 W Hwy 50 and found the store broken into.

According to a preliminary investigation, a stolen Kia Sportage walked through the store’s front door a few minutes earlier. CCTV inside the store showed several people getting out of the car and going to the firearms department. They tried to enter a gun holster using brute force, but were unsuccessful. They then fled the scene, police said.

Officers searched the area but were unable to locate the suspects. During the search, they learned that a Kia Optima had been stolen from the 100 block of Dean Drive, two blocks from Academy Sports.

“It’s very worrying because the people who break into these stores have nefarious ideas in mind, they’re trying to steal weapons. It’s worrying at our level because if these officers try to meet them, we know that these young people are already armed and are trying to steal more weapons.”

Police believe the burglary and the stolen Optima are related. The vehicle, still missing, is a red and gray 2012 model with Illinois registration Q598918.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Det. Nick Schimdt of the O’Fallon Police Department at 618-624-4545.

Agencies work together on incidents.

This is a developing story. It will be updated as new information becomes available.

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