Bank robbery suspects nabbed in Shelbyville

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By Lisa King

Two suspects in a bank robbery were arrested in Shelbyville Monday night after being located hiding in an apartment by police.

When Shelbyville Police Officer Jeff McClellan heard the description of the person that had allegedly robbed the Peoples Bank in Spencer County that day, he had an idea he could be hiding out here, said

Shelbyville Police Chief Robert Schutte.

"Jeff heard the name of Norton, and he had previously participated in an investigation involving him, and he thought he might be able to find him at Hi Point Apartments," Schutte said.

He added that McClellan went to the apartment complex and spotted the red mustang that had been used in the robbery.

"He talked to neighbors and then located him," Schutte said.

Charles Norton, 37, of Taylorsville and Carol Chandler, 26, of Louisville, have been charged with second-degree robbery and receiving stolen property in connection with the bank robbery. Those charges were brought by the Spencer County Sheriff's Office. In addition, Norton has also been charged by the Shelby County Sheriff's Office with falsely reporting an incident. That charge stemmed from a phone call that Norton made prior to the robbery, according to Shelby County Sheriff Mike Armstrong.

The sheriff said that 30 minutes prior to the robbery, dispatch contacted him and said that a male had called in anonymously and said that something "bad" was going to happen at the courthouse and maybe at the Spencer County Courthouse as well. The call was traced to the Speedway in Shelbyville. Armstrong said he suspected at the time that the call was intended to be a decoy.

"It was apparent that it was to pull law enforcement away from some other area, and it just turned out to be Spencer County," he said. "We determined that he had actually made the call and that was his intention."

Events at the bank began when a white male walked in and handed a note to a teller that said to "put the money in the bag and nobody will get hurt," said Spencer County Sheriff's deputy Kyle Bennett.

"The bank clerks watched them leave in an older model red mustang," he said.

Bennett said the clerks told him the mustang had been parked next door at Elmar's B.P., so he watched the tape of the gas station's surveillance video which showed the man getting into the mustang with a blond female waiting in the passenger seat.

"We saw them perfectly on the picture," he said, "and we also saw the tag number. It was a stolen mustang."

Norton was recognized on the video from a previous arrest, and that information was relayed to Shelby County law enforcement.

Then when McClellan came on duty and heard that Norton was involved, he followed a hunch and went to Hi Point Apartments, where he spotted the stolen mustang.

"He sat on it until we arrived to make the arrest," Bennett said. "Everybody involved did a great job -- The Shelbyville Police, the sheriff's office and KSP. The arrest was made so quickly due to all these agencies working together."

Spencer County deputies arrived at Hi Point Apartments at 8:30 p.m., only about six hours after the bank was hit, and Norton and Chandler were arrested without incident, Bennett said. He added that more charges may be forthcoming on Norton.

"There's going to be other charges pending, probably through other agencies," he said. "We think he was involved in some other robberies, maybe burglaries; we are still investigating that."

Bennett said that not all of the money from the bank robbery has been recovered.

Norton and Chandler are lodged in the Shelby County Detention Center, both under a $100,000 full cash bond. They are scheduled to be arraigned Friday, Aug. 1, in Shelby District Court.