Man still on the loose following manhunt in Franklin County
FRANKLIN COUNTY - A man was still on the loose Tuesday morning following a manhunt that began Sunday night in Franklin County.
The search was in the remote area of Project Road and Highway K south of St. Clair, which is near the Meramec River.
The Franklin County Sheriff's Office said the search began Sunday night following a call of a suspicious vehicle on Project Road.
Deputies said they found a vehicle stuck in the grass near a house on Project Road. A female driver told deputies a man with her had gone for help.
The department said the woman driving was the girlfriend of Matthew Lackey, 32, a man wanted for outstanding felony warrants.
In October, Osage County Sheriff’s Deputy Matt Peters said the department was looking for Lackey. Peters said the department suspected Lackey was involved in an October kidnapping in which multiple male suspects held a woman against her own will in Bland.
Court documents back in October showed Lackey had been previously charged for stealing property over $25,000 and assault.
The Franklin County Sheriff's Office said the search for Lackey continued Monday morning after a resident found someone sleeping in a shed on a Project Road property. Deputies said the person sleeping in the shed ran off after the resident confronted him.
At that time, two long guns and a handgun were stolen from another house on Project Road, according to the sheriff's office.
Other neighbors also reported seeing someone in their barn. From photos, they later identified the man they saw as Lackey.
The residents chased the man into the woods and heard a shot fired. They found the two long guns but were unable to find the handgun.
Franklin County deputies and the Missouri State Highway Patrol responded to the scene, as well as the St. Louis County air unit and a K-9 unit from the Jefferson County Sheriff's Office.
The Franklin County Sheriff's Office said Lackey was last seen wearing a green hooded sweatshirt and plaid shorts. He was described as a white man with tattoos on his legs, arms and back.
The department requested anyone who sees Lackey to call the Franklin County Sheriff's Office.
(Editor's Note: This story has been updated to include information about Matthew Lackey's past.)