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Murder Charge Filed After Passenger Dies in Crash During High-Speed Chase

Hazelwood Police said four people in the car had been breaking into vehicles parked in Knollwood Apartments Aug. 14.

A St. Louis man is being charged with murder after a passenger was killed in a crash on McDonnell Boulevard as the driver fled from police in a high-speed chase in Hazelwood Aug. 14.

Rickey Nelson, 22, of St. Louis, was killed when the driver lost control and the car’s passenger-side door hit and wrapped around a utility pole.

Hazelwood Police said that Reno L. Whitt Jr, 21, of the 4500 block of Davidson Avenue in North St. Louis, was driving a stolen Grand Prix. Police said Whitt and three passengers were breaking into cars parked on the Knollwood Apartments parking lot in Hazelwood at about 2:20 a.m. Aug. 14.

Police said the men broke into nine cars on the parking lot.

Residents called police, who blocked the apartment exits with spike strips and squad cars. Police said Whitt avoided stopping by striking a police car door, slamming it shut. An officer was half inside the car and was able to get his leg inside the car as the Grand Prix hit the door, according to the police report.

Whitt sped away and police chased him until the crash on McDonnell Boulevard. All four passengers were injured in the accident.

Whitt was charged Tuesday with second-degree murder, resisting a lawful traffic stop, and nine counts of tampering with a vehicle.

For more crime information on Hazelwood Patch, see the following articles:

  • Passenger From Tuesday's Police Chase Car Accident Pronounced Dead
  • Murder May Have Been Motive for Arson in Villa Rosa Apartments Fire

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