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Thursday, May 5, 2016

Robbery-related warrant issued

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Vance Smith, in a dated photograph. Officials said Thursday his appearance may have changed.
The Clay County Prosecutors Office issued a warrant for a 38-year-old man regarding two bank robberies toward the end of last year.

On Thursday, Clay County Prosecutor Lee Reberger announced his office had issued a warrant for 38-year-old Vance E. Smith. The warrant is for two counts, including robbery related to a Poland bank robbery in November, 2007, and another count of being a habitual traffic violator.

"He is alleged to be a suspect in this matter," Reberger said at a press conference, which took place at the Clay County Justice Center. "This is at a charging stage only."

Reberger was joined at the press conference by Clay County Deputy Prosecutor Kim Jackson, Clay County Sheriff Mike Heaton and Clay County Sheriff's Dept. Det. Jeff Maynard.

On Nov. 23, 2007, the Poland branch of First Financial Bank was robbed by an individual in his mid-to-late 30s, standing approximately 6-foot. The individual was wearing sunglasses, baggy cargo pants, a Carhart-style jacket and a baseball cap.

The robbery in Poland was similar to one that took place in Darlington, Ind., on Oct. 31, 2007.

Reberger said search warrants were served in December for two locations in the Plainfield area and evidence was collected that led his office to issue the warrant. The evidence, however, could not be discussed at the time.

Reberger described Smith as being a white male standing 6-2 and weighing approximately 205 pounds, with brown hair and blue eyes. Reberger said Smith should be considered armed and dangerous.

No weapon was visible at the Poland bank robbery. However, the suspect alleged to have one in his possession.

"There was no weapon displayed in either case," Heaton said.

According to Reberger, Smith was last known to be driving a maroon Dodge Dakota truck, with a Kentucky license plate of 593 DLD.

Reberger said Smith is wanted in Hendricks County on warrants for failure to appear for possession of cocaine, criminal reckless with a deadly weapon and carrying a handgun without a permit, as well as Operating a Vehicle while Intoxicated and habitual traffic violator in Putnam County.

"All law enforcement agencies have been informed," Reberger said. "We need the community's help."

Assisting CCSD in the investigation were the United States Marshals Office, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Indiana State Police Sgt. Andrew Lohrman and the Plainfield Police Dept.

In addition, it was noted that Maynard had been working with Sgt. Tom McKee of the Indiana State Police Lafayette post and Montgomery County Prosecutor regarding the connection between the Poland and Darlington bank robberies.

"We're very pleased with all the agencies that came together to work on this investigation," Reberger said.

Heaton said officials believe Smith lived in Clay County at one time, but could not confirm that. In addition, he said officials knew Smith had family in the Plainfield area, where a search warrant was served.

"It's a cooperative effort to find this individual," Heaton said.

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