Kidnapping in Jefferson City leads to lengthy pursuit that ends with a shootout in Illinois

It all started with a kidnapping and shooting in Jefferson City.

Maria Keena
February 13, 2019 - 7:56 am

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HIGHLAND, Ill. (KMOX) — A Florissant, Missouri man was shot and killed by a man who was trying to carjack him in Bond County, Illinois after a lengthy pursuit that started in Franklin County, Missouri.

Illinois State Police identified 67-year-old Greg Price as the innocent victim. The accused shooter, 39-year-old Leslie Austin of Jefferson City, Missouri, was found dead of a gunshot wound after trading gunfire with police.

Everything started in Jefferson City Tuesday night, where Austin allegedly kidnapped a woman and her child in Jefferson City. Police discovered the vehicle heading east on I-44 in Franklin County and began pursuing it at about 9 p.m. The chase went through downtown St. Louis and over the Poplar Street Bridge into Illinois.

The woman and her child were able to escape on Route 140 in Illinois. Police say the woman had multiple gunshot wounds. She was rushed to surgery and Illinois State Police say she's expected to survive. The child was not hurt. It's believed Austin and the woman were in a relationship.

Authorities say Austin then tried to carjack Price on Route 140 in Bond County. After Price was shot and killed, officers caught up to Austin and police exchanged gunfire with Austin, who was later found dead nearby of a gunshot wound. Officers say it's not clear if it was from the police shootout or a self-inflicted wound.