Closings: Schools, churches, day-cares and businesses

Two arrested for murder of St. Ann auto shop owner

ST. ANN, Mo. – Two people wanted in connection with the murder of a St. Ann business owner were arrested Thursday after a police chase that ended in north St. Louis.

St. Ann police said the man who was killed was not the shooter's intended target.

Before noon Thursday, St. Ann police spotted a vehicle wanted in connection with the murder of 32-year-old Talmadge Smith, the owner of T&R Pitstop. When officers tried to pull the vehicle over, the suspect vehicle fled, reaching speeds of up to 110 miles per hour, according to St. Ann Police Chief Aaron Jiminez.

After driving into north St. Louis, the suspects, a man and woman, stopped near the 1500 block of Gano, got out of the vehicle, and ran. Officers chased the suspects on foot.

Jiminez said St. Louis police officers caught the male driver. St. Ann officers caught up with the woman inside a house and took her into custody.

The suspects were taken to the St. Ann Police Department for questioning. Jiminez said the suspects were arrested for felony fleeing but they were also wanted in connection to the homicide as well.

On January 4, Smith was shot in the face at his business on Geraldine near St. Charles Rock Road. He later died at the hospital.

"We know that the shooter shot the wrong person," Jiminez said. "We know that for a fact."

While Smith was not the intended target of the shooting, Jiminez said detectives are still investigating evidence they found at the murder scene.

"I can tell you that when we did clean up shop to begin with, there were stolen cars, bullet holes in cars, drug investigation, possible racketeering that was going on, so we're also talking about discussing this with the feds."

The suspects have not been identified and no charges have been filed yet in this case. Jiminez said detectives were working hard to present an air-tight case to prosecutors.

"We believe that the shooter has committed three other murders and has gotten away with them," said Jiminez. "We're not going to allow this kind of criminal activity and behavior to be allowed in St. Ann."

The chief said a funeral for Smith will be held on Saturday, January 11.