[The Brazil Times nameplate] Fair ~ 53°F  
High: 58°F ~ Low: 43°F
Wednesday, May 4, 2016

UPDATED: Three arrested following incident

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Officials are investigating a strange incident involving three Louisiana men and allegations of criminal confinement, forgery, theft and resisting law enforcement.

According to officials with the Brazil City Police Department, the investigation began as a forgery complaint at First Financial Bank, 2180 East National Ave., Brazil, shortly after 5 p.m., Friday.

James Bush, 51, Kentucky, entered the bank and immediately claimed he was being forced to cash a forged check by three black males who were waiting for him in a white sport utility vehicle (SUV) parked in The Freeze parking lot across the street.

According to a statement to BCPD Patrolman Elliott Mullinix, Bush explained he was looking for work in Indianapolis to get enough money to go back home to Kentucky when one of the suspects stopped and asked if he could do some construction work.

When Bush agreed and got into the vehicle, he said two more men also got inside and the driver took Interstate-70 into Brazil.

Bush said he was not allowed to leave the vehicle during the trip.

Upon arrival in Brazil, Bush said the driver went to Walmart.

While two of the suspects went inside to purchase new clothing, Bush was allegedly held in the vehicle.

While Bush was forced to change clothes, the suspects allegedly forged a check for him to cash at the local bank.

Officials confirmed to The Brazil Times Sunday the check was from an undisclosed local business.

While leaving the bank, Mullinix saw the SUV leave the parking lot and turn east on United States 40.

Clifton Thomas
Patrolman Dennis Archer, who had just arrived on the scene, was slowed by heavy traffic while attempting to turn east on U.S. 40, but eventually caught up with the SUV.

But the driver refused to stop and drove into the Harmony area, colliding with some road signs and damaging the SUV. After briefly losing police, the driver headed back to U.S. 40 and turned west.

Meanwhile, BCPD Captain Mark Loudermilk, Clay County Sheriff's Department Chief Deputy Rob Gambill and Deputy James Switzer and Knightsville Town Marshal Garry Howard joined pursuit.

In the area of U.S. 40 and Clay Street, Mullinix caught up with the SUV as it stopped and the suspects fled on foot. (During the course of the investigation, officials have confirmed the SUV is a rental car from Georgia.)

Mullinix quickly caught one suspect near the vehicle with the help of a local resident, while CCSD K-9 Handler Brison Swearingen and K-9 Officer Dayk located a second suspect in a bean field across the street.

Initially, an extensive search for the third male was unsuccessful.

However, around 10:20 p.m., Friday, an off-duty sheriff's deputy observed the third suspect walking west on U.S. 40 in the area of Tower Road.

The suspect was taken into custody without incident.

Michael Thomas
Clifton Thomas, 30, Michael Thomas, 33, both from Ponchatoula, La., and William Drake 31, Tickfaw, La., are each currently being held in the Clay County Justice Center on $100,000 cash bonds (with no 10 percent allowed).

Clay Circuit Court Judge Joseph Trout signed probable cause affidavits and formal charging information for each of the suspects on Saturday.

However, all three case files are being reviewed by the Clay County Prosecutor's Office for more potential charges while the investigation continues.

Officials also confirmed Drake, who officials believe was the driver, is also facing an outstanding arrest warrant from Allen County, Ind.

The three remain incarcerated while awaiting further court proceedings later this week.

Note: The nature of the Internet makes it impractical for our staff to review every comment. If you feel that a comment is offensive, please Login or Create an account first, and then you will be able to flag a comment as objectionable. Please also note that those who post comments on thebraziltimes.com may do so using a screen name, which may or may not reflect a website user's actual name. Readers should be careful not to assign comments to real people who may have names similar to screen names. Refrain from obscenity in your comments, and to keep discussions civil, don't say anything in a way your grandmother would be ashamed to read.

Good Job guy's... I am sure the deeper you dig you will find more.

-- Posted by heavy on Mon, Aug 2, 2010, at 11:24 PM

I MUST ask...WHO PROOFREADS the articles ?....Indiana-polis ??.....Inter-state-70..????..Amazing that an editor let this be printed..

-- Posted by ozark1 on Tue, Aug 3, 2010, at 8:57 AM

You know times are tough when out-of-towners come to Brazil looking to steal money.

-- Posted by LastSanePerson on Tue, Aug 3, 2010, at 9:51 AM

Guesswho27 - OMG.....What would possess you to make such a MORONIC comment like that?!?!? Did you read the article? Those men are not even from here and even if they were so what! It may be hard for you to comprehend but this type of thing happens all across the country and not just by "Black people" you narrow minded person! But I guess just the fact that they happen to be black makes it more noticeable. You are a real DB!!!

I am glad this had a good outcome for Mr. Bush who was unharmed. That could have been ugly! Way to go CCSD and BPD!

-- Posted by Proud of My Country on Tue, Aug 3, 2010, at 11:53 AM

Indiana-polis......Inter-state-70.....???.How did this get by an editor ??

-- Posted by ozark1 on Tue, Aug 3, 2010, at 12:49 PM

If you read the actual paper you would see why this happened.

Apparently the transfer of text and the necessary hyphens used in the newspaper to the Internet can sometimes transfer the unwanted hyphens.

It's called a glitch, not a slight by the editor or the staff.

Why be SO negative??

Oh wait, we live in Clay County! That explains your finger pointing! Do you feel better today because you ran someone down?

-- Posted by Cy on Tue, Aug 3, 2010, at 3:22 PM

I would point out to guesswho27 that the Brazzle Dazzle is filled daily with white people a'robbin, a'rapin, and a'rarin for more. Still, anyone of any ethnicity who thinks Brazil is a good target for cash must be in dire straits.

-- Posted by LastSanePerson on Tue, Aug 3, 2010, at 3:22 PM

I personally don't care if they were "little green martians"! They committed a crime & are now locked up. Hope they stay there.

Good work to all law enforcement involved.

-- Posted by th1953 on Tue, Aug 3, 2010, at 6:48 PM

Now, if "little green martians" show up in Brazil we'll know the national debate on illegal aliens has taken on a whole new meaning.

So, would martians carry "green cards" or would that be culturally insensitive?

-- Posted by LastSanePerson on Tue, Aug 3, 2010, at 6:55 PM

LastSanePerson- thank you. You gave me the first laugh of my day. What a hilarious remark. It keeps me chuckling.

-- Posted by Claycountian on Tue, Aug 3, 2010, at 9:52 PM

By the way, I believe I saw Mr. Clifton Thomas, the gentleman with the yellow shirt on in Walmart on Sunday, July 25th around 4:40pm when I was heading to check out line and he was coming in Walmart. My best guess is that he (and possibly his brother & friend) were in town scouting things out 5 days ahead of time before they committed their crime, which isn't necessarily unusual. This was not a crime of passion or opportunity. It was planned, no doubt and probably not the first time they've done it. You never know who is in your backyard.

-- Posted by Claycountian on Tue, Aug 3, 2010, at 9:59 PM

I commend the law enforcement for their job well done.Part of this took place in my own back yard! It was very scary for me and my children and my neighbors! To have strange men and cops with guns running through your yard and plowing through your driveways to catch these guys was something to see. This one man was removed from the bean field just 2 rows in from my yard and not far from my back door! And to think that other creep was wondering around my neighborhood all evening doesn't make me happy! Glad they got him! Good job guys!

-- Posted by nurse92 on Tue, Aug 3, 2010, at 10:47 PM

Respond to this story

Posting a comment requires free registration: