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Court OK’d release of now-wanted man

A robbery and kidnapping suspect released from jail on his own recognizance under the recommendation of prosecutors has a reward for tips on his capture after missing a court hearing.

Kenneth J. Kheel, 21, is wanted on a no-bail warrant after he didn't show up for a pre-trial hearing Oct. 16. Kheel Jarred T. Many, 22; and Codi R. Allen, 23; are accused robbing two men at gunpoint after the victims arranged to buy a ring from Many at 1124 W. Nora Ave. on June 17.

A Spokane police SWAT team search ion July that included tear gas was unsuccessful, and Kheel was arrested during a traffic stop days later.

Many and Allen remain in jail awaiting trial on robbery and kidnapping charges. According to court documents, Kheel told police he was hit in the head during the attack and was “in fact, trying to stop the robbery” by Many and Allen, according to court documents.

Prosecutors recommended Judge Michael Price allow Kheel to leave jail on his own recognizance in September, and Price agreed.

“The state believes that Mr. Kheel's case is all but resolved, and sees no reason to hold Mr. Kheel for these charges any longer,” according to an order filed Sept. 2.

Now Kheel, 5-foot-6 and 130 pounds, is a Crime Stoppers fugitive. Anyone with information on his location is asked to call 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or submit tips online.

Kheel was released from prison in September 2010 after being sentenced in June 2009 to two years in prison with credit for 143 days served for second-degree assault. He had been arrested in January 2009 after then off-duty police Sgt. Brad Thoma suffered a minor stab wound during a confrontation with Kheel in downtown Spokane.

Robbery, kidnapping suspect arrested

A fugitive targeted with tear gas in an unsuccessful SWAT team search on Monday was arrested early today in downtown Spokane.

Kenneth J. Kheel, 21, (left) was arrested during a traffic stop by Spokane Sgt. Kurt Vigesaa near Riverside Avenue and Monroe Street just after midnight, police said.

Kheel and Jarred T. Many, 22, are accused robbing two men at gunpoint after they victims arranged to buy a ring from Many at 1124 W. Nora Ave. on June 17.

Many was arrested at the Nora Avenue home Monday buy Spokane police SWAT team members, but Kheel was not inside as police expected.

Now he's in jail awaiting his first appearance in Superior Court today on two counts of first-degree robbery and one count of first-degree kidnapping.

Kheel was released from prison last September after being sentenced in June 2009 to two years in prison with credit for 143 days served for second-degree assault. He had been arrested in January 2009 after off-duty police Sgt. Brad Thoma suffered a minor stab wound during a confrontation with Kheel in downtown Spokane.

SWAT nabs 1 of 2 robbery suspects

A Spokane man who went to prison for a fight with off-duty police officers is now wanted on robbery and kidnapping charges.

Crime Stoppers is offering a reward for tips that lead to the arrest of Kenneth J. Kheel, who is accused with Jarred T. Many, 22, of robbing two men at 1124 W. Nora Ave. on June 17.

Many was arrested at the home about 10:30 p.m. Monday by Spokane police SWAT team members and hostage negotiators. Police pumped tear gas into the home and found Anthony L. Haines, 24, hiding in the basement but not Kheel.

Haines was arrested on unrelated warrants; Kheel, 21, is still at large.

Police believe Many and Kheel escorted two men who showed up at the home to buy a ring last month, then pushed them to the floor and beat and pistol whipped them before holding them at gunpoint and stealing their money. The robbers also allegedly threatened to kill the victims if they called police, Officer Jennifer DeRuwe said in a news release. Spokane police major crimes Detective Neil Gallion developed information identifying Many and Kheel as suspects.

Anyone with information on Kheel's location is asked to call Crime Stoppers at (509) 327-5111.

Kheel was released from prison last September after being sentenced in June 2009 to two years in prison with credit for 143 days served for second-degree assault. He had been arrested in January 2009 after off-duty police Sgt. Brad Thoma suffered a minor stab wound during a confrontation with Kheel outside the Steam Plant Grill.

Thoma said Kheel and another man were harassing his fiancé, Spokane police Officer Amy Ross.