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Troy’s People’s Bank and Trust President stops bank thief

Posted on Wednesday, October 31, 2012 at 12:34 pm

David Thompson, president of Troy's People's Bank and Trust

David W. Thompson, the President of Peoples Bank & Trust in Troy, experienced his first robbery in the 36 years he has worked there on Tuesday, Oct. 30 just before 3 p.m. The robbery happened at the main branch located at 430 East Wood St., Troy, Mo.

Two bank employees asked a man, who was later identified as Donald Ray Lee, age 58, to take off his mask as he entered into the bank. Lee came into the building wearing blue jeans, a carhartt jacket, gloves and a Halloween mask with his hood pulled over the top of it. Lee ignored all the requests and continued to the middle teller’s desk where he was again asked to take his mask off. This time Lee replied “No. You’re gonna give me all your money.”

Thompson was in his office speaking with a sales person at the time the robbery began. A receptionist who noticed the event-taking place notified Thompson that there was a situation at the teller’s desk. Thompson watched Lee leave with one of the bank’s red moneybags and saw that he had a mask on. He then turned to the teller who signaled that it was in fact a robbery situation.

“I waited for him to leave the building and I followed behind him to lock the door. It’s part of our training and I knew what I had to do,” said Thompson. Thompson left the building, locking the door behind him and followed Lee to his truck. “I knew that something wasn’t right about him. He was very slow and moved like he was under the influence of something. He seemed oblivious that I was even following him,” said Thompson. “I wasn’t scared, I was mad. Mad that he came into the bank and menaced my employees and thought he was going to get away with it,” said Thompson.

Thompson surprised Lee when he (Lee) went to shut the door and Thompson grabbed it and drew his gun to his head. Thompson has his conceal and carry license and carries a Colt .380 pistol with him. Thompson ordered Lee to get out of his car. Lee then reached into his coat as if he had a gun, which Thompson then replied, “Sir, you don’t want to do that or this will end badly.” Thompson grabbed Lee’s hand and assisted him out of the truck where he then stood between Lee and his truck so he could not get away.

During this time, Loan Officer, Gary Leifert came out of the building. Leifert, who also has his conceal and carry license, helped assist Thompson while they waited for the police to arrive.

The Troy Police Department was on the scene within 60 seconds after Thompson and Lee entered the parking lot. The police

Donald Ray Lee

ordered Lee to the ground and asked Thompson and Leifert to step back and out of potential danger.

“Troy Police did a phenomenal job with their fast arrival and taking care of the situation,” said Thompson.

During the police search, Thompson found out that Lee was a customer of the bank for the last six months. Lee was apprehended and taken into police custody. Police revealed that he did not have a weapon on him, and only acted as if he did to pose as a threat.

Lee’s bail bond has been set for $50,000.00 cash only and is being charges with Robbery in the 1st Degree.

Peoples Bank & Trust was last robbed in the 1930’s but the employees have been prepared with all their training that they go through on a yearly bases. Thompson gave credit to his employees by saying, “Everyone performed perfectly under this pressure and it was handled safely and everyone stayed calm.” He also added, “My employees now know that I will go totally to bat for them and hopefully they feel safer knowing that.”

All of the employees at Peoples Bank & Trust were very courageous and stayed calm during the robbery. Hand signals were used to communicate the urgency of the situation until they could safely call the police