Man pleads guilty to carjacking that killed Gus Gus Fun Bus owner

Curtis Alford

ST. LOUIS – A 21-year-old man pleaded guilty in federal court Thursday to his role in a June 2018 carjacking that claimed the life of the owner of the popular Gus Gus Fun Bus.

According to St. Louis police, the carjacking took place just after 12 p.m. on Saturday, June 16 in the 700 block of Chestnut Street, less than a block away from the Taste of Downtown STL event.

Two women said they were parking their Ford F-150 on the street when they were approached by two individuals, Curtis Alford and Jana Stowers. Alford and Stowers pepper-sprayed the women and stole their truck.

During the vehicle theft, Alford is said to have run over two witnesses, one of whom was identified as Michael Arnold, the Gus Gus owner. Arnold was attempting to record the suspects on his phone prior to being struck.

Mike Arnold – Gus Gus Fun Bus owner

Arnold suffered fractures to his scapula, elbow, several ribs, and his spine.

Alford drove northbound on 7th Street, where he swerved the truck in the direction of two police officers. Alford crashed the truck a short time later. Alford and Stowers were taken into custody and later admitted to planning the robbery because they were both homeless and needed money, police said.

Arnold died at the hospital a few days later. He was 54.

By pleading guilty, Alford will be eligible for a sentence no longer than 25 years in prison.

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