Lexington bank employee helps catch robber, police say

Michael Ray Keith
Michael Ray Keith

Bank of the Bluegrass & Trust Co. in Lexington was robbed Wednesday afternoon, but within minutes, police had a suspect and a confession, Lt. Christopher Van Brackel said.

Police were called to the bank, at the corner of East High Street and South Limestone, at about 3:20 p.m.

A white man with gray hair who was wearing a brown zippered hoodie had gone into the bank and given a teller a note. The teller gave the man money and slipped a dye pack, a device that explodes and sprays dye, into the money, Van Brackel said.

The dye pack went off outside the bank. The man took off his hoodie, which contained the money, and headed southeast on foot, Van Brackel said.

Another bank employee, who was inside his office, saw and heard the dye pack explode from an office window. The employee then saw the man take off his hoodie and run, Van Brackel said.

The suspect then sat on the steps of a house on South Limestone, he said. The bank employee found him sitting there as police got to the house, Van Brackel said.

The man, Michael Ray Keith, 59, first told police that he had tried to rob the bank; later, during an interview at police headquarters, he said he robbed the bank, Van Brackel said.

Keith is charged with first-degree robbery and lodged in the Fayette County jail.