Three charged in 10-year-old East Chicago killing
BY TERESA AUCH SCHULTZ email@example.com September 19, 2013 3:46PM
Updated: October 21, 2013 2:17PM
Three men could face the death penalty after they were charged with killing an East Chicago man in 2003.
The indictment charged Kiontay Pennington, 34, of Gary, Oscar Cosme, 40, of East Chicago and Adron Tancil, 36, all with one count of using a gun during a drug trafficking crime that resulted in the murder of Julio Cartagena.
Tancil already is incarcerated, having been convicted in 2010 of attempting to murder his former girlfriend.
Pennington and Cosme were arrested last month and ordered held without bond after federal attorneys filed a probable cause affidavit against them. The indictment adds Tancil as a co-defendant.
The charge makes it possible for the government to seek the death penalty if the men are convicted. However, U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder must decide whether to do that.
Cartagena was gunned down outside a residence in East Chicago on May 16, 2003. Police were nearby, and the defendants, in a car driven by Louis Henderson, fled. The car crashed, and Henderson was killed. Police talked to the three survivors afterward, but the men all denied taking part in the shooting. No charges were ever brought against them in state court. The probable cause affidavit says at least one new witness recently came forward after he was charged in another racketeering gang case.
Federal attorneys said in the affidavit that Cartagena’s killing was revenge for him stealing 50 kilograms of cocaine and heroin, worth $1 million, from the man he worked for, someone who had connections to the Two Six street gang.
Pennington is scheduled to be arraigned Friday, and Cosme is to be arraigned Monday.