Suspect in armed robberies fatally shoots himself at South County elementary school

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OAKVILLE, MO (KPLR)-A suspect in two overnight armed robberies fatally shot himself in the parking lot of a south St. Louis elementary school early Friday morning. The shooting happened around 4:35 a.m. at Blades Elementary School in Oakville.

According to Brian Schellman of the St. Louis County Police Department, the man was suspected in two robberies that happened at a nearby Bank of America on Lemay Ferry. The first occurred around 1:00a.m.  A man was using the ATM when a man carrying a rifle robbed him. Around 4:25 a.m., another person called police to report being robbed at the same ATM.

Police were close by and spotted the suspect in a truck that matched the description from the robbery. After a short chase, he stopped in the parking lot of Blades Elementary School. After yelling at police officers, Schellman says the suspect, identified as Nickolas T. Gralike, 24, of Jefferson County,  shot himself in the head.

The shot blew out a window of the truck. Unsure if whether Gralike was shooting at them, officers at the scene did return fire at the truck. A autopsy conducted by the County Medical Examiner showed that shots fired by the officers did not strike the suspect.

Gralike was pronounced dead at the scene.

Mehlville School District Assistant Superintendent Dr. Brian Lane canceled classes at Blades Friday. The Before Care YMCA program was moved to Oakville Elementary School.

The incident is under investigation.