Gary SWAT team testifies in Isom case
By Ruth Ann Krause Post-Tribune correspondent January 12, 2013 6:38PM
Kevin Isom. | Provided Photo~Sun-Times Media
Updated: February 14, 2013 6:45AM
Members of the Gary police SWAT unit described for jurors the steps they took more than five years ago to remove a man from an apartment building where shots had been fired — steps taken after attempts to contact the man had failed.
The testimony came on Saturday, the sixth day evidence was presented in the capital murder trial of Kevin Charles Isom, 47, who is charged in the shooting deaths of his wife, Cassandra Isom, 40, and stepchildren Michael Moore, 16, and Ci’Andria Cole, 13. Isom also is charged with three counts of attempted murder involving Gary police officers called to the family’s first-floor apartment in the Lake Shore Dunes complex at 5708 Hemlock Ave., in the Miller section.
Jason Angel, a SWAT officer, described going through a window into a vacant basement apartment, where officers on the entry team listened for sounds from the floor above. Officers have said they didn’t hear any sounds.
After the team was unable to get inside through the back door of Isom’s apartment, they regrouped in the vacant apartment, then rammed open the front door. Angel described seeing Isom on the bedroom floor, where he appeared lethargic, mumbled incoherently and didn’t react to commands to show his hands.
Angel said he heard another officer deploy his Taser, which appeared to have no effect on Isom. Angel was on the bed, his submachine gun with a light trained on Isom while officers continued telling Isom to show his hands. Angel initially said a fellow SWAT officer, Sgt. Albert Amptmeyer, used his fists to strike Isom in the head and face, then said it was possible Amptmeyer used the heel of his palm to subdue Isom, who was reaching under the bed with his left arm.
Angel said he saw no injuries to Isom’s face before Amptmeyer laid hands on Isom. Afterward, Isom had a cut above his right eyebrow and swelling to his face.
Amptmeyer testified Friday that when officers lifted Isom from the floor after he was handcuffed, a pistol fell from the waistband of his pants.
Testimony is expected to resume Monday.