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Man sentenced in convenience store heist

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Matthew B. McKay, 36, of Indianapolis, has been sentenced to eight years and 181 days in jail for felony robbery and theft charges after pleading guilty to swiping cash and lottery tickets from a Circle K on Gladstone Avenue.

McKay was arrested by Columbus police June 7 while driving a pick-up that had been reported stolen in Marion County, court records show.

Bartholomew County Circuit Court Judge Stephen Heimann accepted McKay’s guilty plea two months ago and issued a sentencing order on Thursday.

The judge noted that McKay had 13 total convictions, including 10 felonies, and had violated probation in the past.

Court records say that two Circle K employees identified McKay from a photo lineup.

They told police that a man who fit McKay’s description entered the store early in the morning June 1 and stole a lottery dispenser filled with tickets.

That incident was captured on in-store surveillance videos.

Five days later, McKay came in the store again and took cash from a cash drawer, the Circle K employees said in an affidavit from the Columbus Police Department filed in the court record.

On that occasion, McKay was wearing a black wig as a disguise, court records say.

He bought a Polar Pop drink and then demanded cash, while telling Circle K staff members not to press any alarm buttons, the employees said.

On the Class D felony theft charge, Heimann ruled that McKay would get credit for 181 days already served in jail. He then sentenced the defendant to “time served” on that count.

On the Class C felony robbery charge, the judge sentenced McKay to eight years in jail with no credit for time served.

Heimann also recommended a mental health evaluation. Court records say McKay had complained of seeing things, hearing voices and hearing a high-pitched ringing in his ears while in custody.

Class C felonies are punishable in Indiana with prison sentences of two to eight years and up to a $10,000 fine.

Class D felonies can draw prison sentences of six months to three years, plus a $10,000 fine.

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