MIDDLEBURG HEIGHTS, Ohio - Three teens were arrested after leading police on a chase through parts of Cuyahoga County early this morning.
Middleburg Heights police said it started after a state trooper spotted the teens trying to smash a stolen Jeep into B & T Shooting Supplies on Pearl Road just after 3 a.m.
The trooper was driving by when he saw the suspects jump out of the Jeep which hit a stanchion in front of the store, then run to a stolen getaway van, according to investigators.
Middleburg Heights police officers chased the van for 20 minutes through parts of Strongsville and onto I-71 and I-480, with speeds reaching 105 miles per hour, according to a report.
Police said the van came to a rolling stop on I-480 near I-176, and two suspects ran away from it while a third remained inside.
Officers arrested all three, including one suspect who had hopped the median. Body camera video showed an officer chasing him down as the suspect ran toward oncoming traffic. Police said they arrested a 15, 16 and 17-year-old.
“They were unsuccessful. They came out here to steal weapons to use wherever they're going to use them, for no good purpose, for no good reason, and they failed, and the reason why they failed is because of the alertness of law enforcement,” said Middleburg Heights Police Chief John Maddox.
Police said they believe at least one of the suspects may have been involved in a 2015 smash and grab at B & T.
Investigators are looking into a possible connection to a Tuesday morning break-in at nearby Fin Feather Fur. Thieves stole nearly a dozen guns, which can sell for more on the street than in store, investigators said.
“Bad guys don't buy guns; they steal guns, and that's what's going on around here, not just in Middleburg Heights or Cleveland,” Maddox said. “It's everywhere.”
The teens are facing charges including fleeing, receiving stolen property, obstructing official business and attempted breaking and entering. Nobody was injured in the chase.