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Robbery report leads to meth lab arrest

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A Clifford man sought in an armed robbery was arrested Sunday by the Beech Grove Police Department, a few hours after the Bartholomew County Sheriff’s Department arrested a Nineveh man driving a truck similar to the robbery suspect’s vehicle.

David M. Keen, 29, 4963 Sugar St., Clifford, has been placed on 72-hour hold by the Beech Grove Police Department on two charges of armed robbery, auto theft and fleeing police. He is being held in connection with robberies at gas stations Thursday and Saturday.

A University of Indianapolis police officer spotted a stolen brown van Saturday night after the second robbery. The driver got away, but not for long.

The vehicle description and tips from the public helped the Beech Grove Police Department locate the driver and make an arrest.

Meanwhile, the sheriff’s department arrested David Denson, 41, Nineveh, on preliminary charges of dealing and manufacturing methamphetamine.

The sheriff’s department received a call about 2 a.m. Sunday to be on the lookout for Keen, believed to be driving an older-model red Chevy pickup truck. Beech Grove police thought he was headed toward his residence in Clifford.

An older-model red Chevy pickup truck was passing by Deputy Jason Williams about that time. Williams attempted to stop the truck, but the driver fled behind a home on the 4000 block of East County Road 400N. Homeowners heard the disturbance, and two of the four reportedly came out of their home with guns.

Williams ordered the residents to the ground, and they complied.

“They did the correct thing once the officer engaged them,” Maj. Todd Noblitt, spokesman for the sheriff’s department, said.

Deputies found the red pickup truck behind the house near a wooded area. Inside, they found the makings of a methamphetamine lab.

“The people in the vehicle actually had somewhat of a meth lab,” Noblitt said. “That’s the reason they were attempting to evade the deputy.”

Denson was in the truck and was arrested and taken to the Bartholomew County Jail about 4 a.m. Sunday.

“These people were definitely in the wrong place at the wrong time,” Noblitt said. “It was not the suspects in the armed robbery, but they did have a meth lab.”

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