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Law Clerk Missing on St. Thomas; Suspects in Custody

Oct. 28, 2008 — Two suspects seen driving the car of a missing V.I. Superior Court law clerk were taken in for questioning by police Tuesday night, but as of 10 p.m. the whereabouts of 27-year-old Gabriel L. Lerner were still unknown.
Lerner — the judicial law clerk of V.I. Superior Court Judge Brenda J. Hollar –was reported missing around 1 p.m. Tuesday after he failed to show up to work for two days. He was last seen Saturday, jogging in the Lindbergh Bay area. Police subsequently searched Lerner's home and found that neither he nor his car were there, said St. Thomas-St. John District Police Chief Rodney Querrard Sr. during a press conference held late Tuesday afternoon.
An all-points bulletin was issued immediately for Lerner's car, Querrard said.
"Less than a minute later, coincidentally, one of my officers reported that he was following the vehicle, which was being operated by a black male with one passenger," Querrard said. Attempts made by police to stop the vehicle were unsuccessful, and a chase through the streets of St. Thomas ensued, according to a V.I. Police Department press release issued late Tuesday evening.
The chase ended after the vehicle crashed into a marked police car in the Upper Scott Free area. The driver and passenger exited the car — a maroon Ford Focus, license plate No. TCH-571 — and fled "into the bush," Querrard said during the afternoon press conference. Numerous police officers at the crash site, along with a local helicopter operator, helped to search for the suspects for more than an hour but were unable to find them, he said.
At the time, one of the suspects was barefoot, while the other did not have on a shirt, Querrard said. Superior Court marshals continued to stake out the area, and apprehended the two suspects without incident more than an hour later, according to the VIPD's evening news release.
As of late Tuesday afternoon, the VIPD's Forensics Unit was processing Lerner's car along with evidence from the crash site. Because the investigation is still ongoing, Querrard could not give details on what was found. Instead, he said police have been following up on all leads and asked that anyone with information about Lerner's whereabouts contact police immediately.
"Whoever had this vehicle put tint on the windows and was driving it around," Querrard explained during the press conference. "Someone must have seen it, and we're asking those people to call the police and give us the information."
A $10,000 reward is being offered for any information leading to the conviction of "any and all persons" involved in the crime, the release said. Residents can call Police Detective Lionel Bess at 715-5534, Querrard at 715-5548 or emergency 911.
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Oct. 28, 2008 -- Two suspects seen driving the car of a missing V.I. Superior Court law clerk were taken in for questioning by police Tuesday night, but as of 10 p.m. the whereabouts of 27-year-old Gabriel L. Lerner were still unknown.
Lerner -- the judicial law clerk of V.I. Superior Court Judge Brenda J. Hollar --was reported missing around 1 p.m. Tuesday after he failed to show up to work for two days. He was last seen Saturday, jogging in the Lindbergh Bay area. Police subsequently searched Lerner's home and found that neither he nor his car were there, said St. Thomas-St. John District Police Chief Rodney Querrard Sr. during a press conference held late Tuesday afternoon.
An all-points bulletin was issued immediately for Lerner's car, Querrard said.
"Less than a minute later, coincidentally, one of my officers reported that he was following the vehicle, which was being operated by a black male with one passenger," Querrard said. Attempts made by police to stop the vehicle were unsuccessful, and a chase through the streets of St. Thomas ensued, according to a V.I. Police Department press release issued late Tuesday evening.
The chase ended after the vehicle crashed into a marked police car in the Upper Scott Free area. The driver and passenger exited the car -- a maroon Ford Focus, license plate No. TCH-571 -- and fled "into the bush," Querrard said during the afternoon press conference. Numerous police officers at the crash site, along with a local helicopter operator, helped to search for the suspects for more than an hour but were unable to find them, he said.
At the time, one of the suspects was barefoot, while the other did not have on a shirt, Querrard said. Superior Court marshals continued to stake out the area, and apprehended the two suspects without incident more than an hour later, according to the VIPD's evening news release.
As of late Tuesday afternoon, the VIPD's Forensics Unit was processing Lerner's car along with evidence from the crash site. Because the investigation is still ongoing, Querrard could not give details on what was found. Instead, he said police have been following up on all leads and asked that anyone with information about Lerner's whereabouts contact police immediately.
"Whoever had this vehicle put tint on the windows and was driving it around," Querrard explained during the press conference. "Someone must have seen it, and we're asking those people to call the police and give us the information."
A $10,000 reward is being offered for any information leading to the conviction of "any and all persons" involved in the crime, the release said. Residents can call Police Detective Lionel Bess at 715-5534, Querrard at 715-5548 or emergency 911.
Back Talk Share your reaction to this news with other Source readers. Please include headline, your name and city and state/country or island where you reside.