Man with criminal history arrested after apparent attempted scam
By Erin Guerra Post-Tribune correspondent August 7, 2012 12:36PM
Leo Gorman. | Provided photo~Sun-Times Media
Updated: September 9, 2012 6:15AM
A man with an extensive criminal record in eight states was arrested in Porter County, on a preliminary charge of drunken driving, as he allegedly attempted to scam a 79-year-old woman.
Gorman’s response: “You caught me. I won’t be back,” according to the police report.
Police are investigating whether Leo “Billy” Gorman successfully completed scams on anyone locally.
Officer Paul Czupryn, with the Porter County Sheriff’s Department, was on patrol just after 5 p.m. Monday in Morgan Township when he saw an unfamiliar pickup in a driveway in the 300 block of South County Road 150E and a man at the house’s back door. When Czupryn pulled into the driveway, the man — later identified as Gorman, 31, of Lancaster, Pa. — briskly walked and stumbled toward a red 2002 Ford F250 truck. Asked what he was doing, Gorman said he was checking the house’s lightning rods and antennas, a story that made the officer suspicious because he is familiar with the homeowner and her son, a carpenter who lives across the street, people who would likely would do that type of chore themselves.
The homeowner told police Gorman had arrived a short time before and told her there were problems with the house and he was preparing an estimate for repairs. All he had done before the officer arrived was to walk around the outside of the house; no money had been exchanged, she said. However, as Czupryn spoke with the woman, Gorman got into his vehicle and tried to back around the squad car, nearly striking it, according to the police report.
A cold case of hard lemonade was found in the truck, and Gorman’s blood was drawn with a warrant after he refused sobriety and breath-alcohol tests.
Gorman has a long list of aliases, alternate dates of birth and Social Security numbers and an extensive criminal arrest record from Illinois, Minnesota, Missouri, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina and West Virginia.
There is an warrant for his arrest in Pennsylvania for theft by deception, and he previously has been arrested for receiving stolen property, passing bad checks, obtaining property through false pretense, larceny, drunken driving and leaving the scene of a crash involving death.