Two arrested in connection to robberies

Sunday, September 2, 2012
Michael Kelley

POLAND -- Two men, including a Clay County resident, were arrested Saturday afternoon in connection to an armed robbery.

At approximately 7:45 a.m., Saturday, the Clay County Sheriff's Department received a 911 call in reference to an armed robbery, which had taken place at the Poland Grocery and Hardware Store, 8475 State Road 42, Poland.

During the course of the investigation, the Owen County Sheriff's Department received a call in reference to an armed robber at a Dollar General State, located on State Road 67, Gosport, Ind.

As the investigation of the Poland robbery continued, Clay County Sheriff's deputies received information that a white man had entered the store and allegedly picked up a couple of items before heading toward the cash register.

While there, he allegedly asked for a pack of cigarettes before displaying a handgun to the attendant.

The man then allegedly asked for the money in the register and fled the store.

According to witnesses, the man got into a vehicle, driven by another man. The witnesses said the two then traveled northbound on County Road 850 East, out of Poland.

Clay County Sheriff Mike Heaton said witnesses described the man in the store as being white, approximately 5-feet-10 to 6-0, wearing a black hoodie.

Heaton added the men left the store with an undisclosed amount of cash, in addition to cigarettes and two beverages.

Both the Clay County and Owen County departments believed both incidents to be connected from the get-go.

On Saturday, Heaton told The Brazil Times the Owen County Sheriff's Department received a description of the vehicle the two men were in and a license plate number in addition to surveillance video from the Dollar General Store.

With the information gathered from the two sheriff departments and several anonymous tips, Michael Kelley, 20, Poland, and Joseph Kuiper, 21, Demont, Ind., were taken into custody at approximately 3 p.m., in the Indianapolis area, by the U.S. Marshal Task Force.

Both subjects were transported to the Clay County Justice Center and are currently being held on charges of armed robbery. Kelley's bond was set at $50,000, with no 10 percent allowed, while Kuiper's bond was set at $25,000, also with no 10 percent allowed.

Joseph Kuiper

Officials said the investigation is ongoing.

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