Rooster robbery suspect pleads guilty, awaits sentence
RAPID CITY, S.D. — The Rapid City man accused of stealing 24 guns from the Rooster Bait and Tackle in Rapid City last August has accepted a plea deal in federal court Friday.
Matthew Keifer, 31, pleaded guilty to theft of a firearm and aiding and abetting, in exchange for the second charge, possession of stolen firearms, be dropped.
Keifer is following suit with his accomplice, Zephaniah Thompson, who took a similar deal in January for the same crime.
Court documents say Thompson drove Keifer to The Rooster in the 1400 block of West Main St. in Rapid City on the morning of Aug. 22, 2018.
Keifer then used a crow bar to force open the back door of the store, where he stole 24 handguns.
Thompson picked up Keifer shortly afterwards and drove him to his home in Fairburn, South Dakota. There, the two used a Dremel tool to remove serial numbers from some of the guns.
Several guns were brought to Rapid City, where Thompson traded two for methamphetamine and tried to sell others.
Investigators recovered one gun from an individual the following day. It was determined that the recovered gun was stolen from The Rooster and was sold by Keifer.
Throughout the investigation, 22 of the 24 guns were recovered by law enforcement, in association with the robbery.
Thompson awaits sentencing in June. Keifer’s sentencing date has yet to be set.
The maximum sentence for theft of a firearm is 10 years in prison, a $250,000 fine, or both, and three years of supervised release.