JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (WMC) - Law enforcement officials in Missouri are investigating the death of an elderly couple after police say a Memphis man was behind the wheel in a crash that killed them.
The couple had just celebrated their 66th wedding anniversary. They were beloved in their community outside of St. Louis.
“Oh my it was tragic” said Lawrence Whitley, neighbor of victims Bernard and Marilyn Steffel.
The Bernard, 91, and Marylin, 89, had just celebrated their 66th wedding anniversary and were returning from a trip to the Ozarks when investigators say Memphian Demarius Rubin slammed head on into their car.
Rubin also died in the crash.
The Missouri State Highway Patrol said Rubin was driving a stolen Chevy Silverado going the wrong way on Highway 54 when he slammed into the Steffel’s Impala.
He was fleeing from police who were chasing him. It is not clear how fast police and Rubin were going.
Rubin had a record here in Memphis. In 2016 he was charged with domestic assault. A girlfriend told police he became unhappy when she took too long getting food from the store.
According to the affidavit, she said he started texting her saying things like he was going to spit in her mouth and whoop her.
In 2015 Rubin was arrested in a rash of vehicle burglaries.
Bernard Steffel was a lieutenant colonel in the Missouri National Guard and ran a family construction business. Their children say his wife Marilyn was an angel.
“Good friends. Good neighbors. Great people," said Whitley.
Demarius Rubin’s family in Memphis did not want to do an interview.
The crash remains under investigation.