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CINCINNATI (AP) -- Cincinnati police say a group of girls who shoplifted snacks from a convenience store triggered a police chase that ended when their car crashed into a utility pole, injuring three of them.

The Cincinnati Enquirer reports the pursuit began early Tuesday after a store manager reported two girls stole potato chips and other items and took off in a car. An officer who responded saw a similar vehicle and unsuccessfully tried to pull it over, leading to the pursuit.

Police say the 16-year-old driver and two passengers, a 12-year-old and a 14-year-old, were taken to a hospital and charges are pending. The youngest is in critical condition.

Two other teens were cited for curfew violations and released to their parents.

Police are investigating whether the officer followed proper procedure.

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