UPDATE 3/28/23 — Court updates for those involved in this case:
- Kaylee Gold has an arraignment scheduled for 1 p.m. on April 10. Gold pleaded not guilty on Jan. 3.
- Levi Thomas has a pre-trial conference scheduled for 11 a.m. on April 17. Thomas pleaded not guilty on Feb. 28.
- Ryan Hall has a disposition scheduled for 9 a.m. on May 9.
- Cody Wayne Dugan-Ingram has a pre-trial conference scheduled for 9:30 a.m. on May 30. Dugan-Ingram pleaded not guilty on March 3.
- Kyle Carlisle has a pre-trial conference scheduled for 10 a.m. on Sept. 6. Carlisle pleaded not guilty on March 2.
Original story, published Feb. 17, 2023:
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — A 17-year-old juvenile will be tried as an adult in connection to a string of robberies.
Levi Allen Thomas, 17, of Springfield, is facing two felony counts of first-degree robbery.
A warrant has been issued for Thomas and his bond has been set for $100,000.
In December of 2022, Kaylee Dawn Gold was arrested in connection to a series of robberies that occurred at an Aurora McDonald’s restaurant and multiple vape shops in Springfield. It was determined that she participated in an armed robbery at Euphoria Smoke and Vape on South Kimbrough Avenue on Nov. 16.
Security footage shows that around 2 a.m. on Nov. 9, five people with facial coverings and a police scanner stood outside the vape shop planning to burglarize the business. They tried to open the front door, but the alarm sounded and they ran away.
On Nov. 16, an employee of the shop filed a police report about an armed robbery that had occurred between 4:30 and 5 p.m. One of the three masked suspects — later identified as Thomas — pulled a gun out and pointed it at the employee, ordering him to comply.
According to the police report, the other two suspects are Elijah Smith, 20, and Cody Dugan-Ingram, 20, both of Springfield.
While Thomas held the handgun, the other two began stealing, according to the police report. They acquired around $600 in cash. Thomas pounded on one of the display cases and told Smith to get vape pens, calling him “Elijah” in the process. Smith began taking the contents of the case and putting them in a duffel bag. Dugan began to assist after taking the cash. Eventually, all three fled on foot.
On Nov. 28, another armed robbery occurred at Prince Tobacco on East Kearney Street. Three suspects entered around 10 p.m. and stole cash, vaping materials, and THC edibles. The police report states that their “Modus Operandi and appearances were similar” to the suspects from the above vape shop robbery. One of the suspects was wearing the same Indigo Sky Casino hoodie that he wore at the Nov. 9 attempted vape shop break-in.
Witnesses saw the suspects get into a silver or gray “boxy” Jeep SUV after this robbery.
On Nov. 29, the Aurora McDonald’s robbery happened that led to the arrest of Kaylee Gold and Ryan Hall. The two suspects at the McDonald’s robbery bore a resemblance to the suspects of the Springfield robberies. Hall had been fired from the McDonald’s three days before the robbery.
With the Hall lead, police tracked down Kaylee Gold, who had a “boxy” silver or gray Jeep Patriot registered to her name. Police used Flock cameras to track her license plate and found that the Patriot had been in Springfield during the robberies. The vehicle was leased and had a GPS tracker. Police used this tracker to place the Patriot near the Euphoria vape shop during the times of the robberies.
Police got a search warrant for Hall and Gold’s home in Aurora and found items connecting them to the robberies and attempted burglary, including an airsoft handgun that matched the one Thomas had allegedly used in Springfield, duffel bags of vape pens and clothing worn by the suspects.
During an interview, Gold told police that she drove to the locations with Hall through a written statement:
“Around the middle of November my boyfriend, Ryan, had me go to Springfield to pick up his friends Eli, Levi, and Cody. He told me where to go and to park at a restaurant. He told me not to move or leave until he says so or he will do what my ex did to me. I was scared but I did as I was told.”-Kaylee Gold’s statement to Springfield police
In the statement, Gold said Hall waited in the car while the other three robbed the businesses. This process was repeated for the Nov. 29 robbery.
Hall downplayed his involvement but told police about Smith’s, Dugan-Ingram’s and Thomas’s involvement. He told police that Thomas was the one who held the handgun and that the airsoft gun police found in his home was the same one. Hall told police that the Prince Tobacco robbery was committed by Smith, Thomas, and a man named Kyle Carlisle, 19, of Springfield.
Carlisle and Smith were passengers of a truck involved in a rollover accident near Parkview High School that left a pregnant woman dead in September of 2022.
Hall identified each of the men and Thomas in the security footage. He said that it was him wearing the Indigo Sky Casino hoodie during the attempted break-in on Nov. 9 but that the hoodie belonged to Carlisle.
Carlisle, Smith and Thomas were arrested for first-degree robbery on Dec. 5, 2022. A judge ordered Thomas’ to be prosecuted as though he were an adult on Feb. 16.
Smith told police he participated in the Nov. 9 attempted break-in and robberies. He identified the four other people standing with him in the security footage. Smith said Gold drove them to the location, that she knew what was happening and was a willing participant. He said Thomas was the gunman.
Smith said that Hall told them he would sell the stolen property. All Smith got for participating was one vape pen.
Smith also told police that it was he and Thomas who robbed the McDonald’s on Nov. 29 while Hall and Carlisle waited for them outside. Smith got about $100 in cash for that robbery.
Dugan told police that he received nothing for his involvement and that he did it only because “of fear that Hall would harm him and his family if he did not.”
Thomas was not arrested by the time of this writing. He is currently living in a child behavioral health facility in Springfield.
This article will be updated as Thomas’ and the other suspects’ cases progress.