Two suspects apprehended in Poland, Gosport robberies

Monday, September 3, 2012

BRAZIL -- Two Indiana men were arrested over the weekend in connection with a pair of armed robberies of stores in west-central Indiana.

The Owen County Sheriff's Department said U.S. marshals took Michael Kelly, 20, Poland, and Joseph Kuiper, 21, Demont, Ind, into custody Saturday in Indianapolis.

Police said Kuiper and Kelly were involved in robberies at a Dollar General store in Gosport and a Poland grocery store in Clay County.

"There was an undisclosed amount of currency taken from both (businesses)," Owen County sheriff's Chief Deputy Greg Denny said.

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 Store on State Road 67 in Gosport.

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

There, he allegedly asked for a pack of cigarettes before displaying a handgun to the attendant. The man then reportedly asked for the money in the register and fled the store.

According to witnesses, the man got into a vehicle driven by another man. Witnesses said the suspects then drove off northbound out of Poland on County Road 850 East.

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 scene with an undisclosed amount of cash in addition to cigarettes and two beverages.

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

Later Saturday, 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, Kelley and Kuiper were taken into custody by the U.S. Marshal Task Force in the Indianapolis area at approximately 3 p.m.

The subjects were transported to the Clay County Justice Center at Brazil and are currently being held on charges of armed robbery, with bond set at $25,000 (no 10 percent allowed).

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