Lake County courts: Gary man charged in 2012 rape
Ruth Ann Krause Post-Tribune correspondent May 2, 2014 7:28PM
Updated: June 4, 2014 6:15AM
Gary man charged
in 2012 rape
A Gary man has been charged with several felonies in connection with a November 2012 rape in the city’s Miller section.
Sabastian X. Douglas, 23, is charged with rape, criminal deviate conduct, armed robbery, criminal confinement and sexual battery in the attack on a woman in an alley in the 500 block of South Lake Street.
The woman told police she had left work at the Stop and Shop Store, 5900 Miller Ave., and was walking north on Lake Street when a man yelled to her, came up and stuck a handgun in her side, forcing her across the street into the alley. The man dumped out her purse, took her ID and cellphone and raped her at gunpoint, according to police.
“I just got out of prison, and they call me ‘Bash’ for a reason,” the woman said the man told her.
She returned to the store, called police, and a co-worker told her a man known as “Bash” had been in the store a short time ago and was a customer in recent weeks, police said. Police retrieved video surveillance from the store.
The victim was treated at Methodist Hospitals Northlake Campus in Gary. DNA evidence was sent to the Indiana State Police crime lab, which matched it to Douglas, who has a conviction in Illinois, and he was arrested, authorities said.
Douglas also was charged in October with burglary while armed and armed robbery in a Merrillville case.
Sentence issued in pawn shop holdup
A Portage man was placed Friday in Lake County’s alternative sentencing program for the July 2 robbery of a Merrillville pawn shop.
Terrence L. Bailey, 29, pleaded guilty in February to taking $833 at gunpoint from EZ Pawn, 5466 Broadway.
He ordered three employees to lie on the ground, broke several glass cases and then demanded the keys to the cash register, police said.
Under his plea agreement, he will serve two years in Lake County Community Corrections, and prosecutors dismissed other robbery charges as well as those of criminal confinement and resisting law enforcement.
Griffith man charged
in gas station holdups
A Griffith man faces three counts of armed robbery and one of attempted robbery in a series of gas station holdups.
Desman L. Thomas, 38, of the 900 block of East 35th Avenue, robbed the Citgo station, 6150 W. Ridge Road, Griffith, at knifepoint on Dec. 22, and on March 13 confronted the same clerk as he was closing the business, but the employee managed to run from him, according to prosecutors.
The other robberies in which Thomas is charged are March 26 at Luke Oil, 1224 E. Ridge Road, Griffith, across the street from the Citgo station, and April 24 at the Admiral station, 7113 Taft St., Merrillville.
Witnesses said Thomas drove the same silver Nissan Altima and wore similar clothing in all of the robberies, court records state.
Bail reduced for
Illinois man in killing
Bail was reduced Friday for a Harvey, Ill., man charged with murder and felony murder in the May 2012 shooting death of a 24-year-old mother in Schererville.
Lake Superior Court Judge Clarence Murray cut the bail for William Blasingame III, 32, from $500,000 to $75,000.
Blasingame’s attorney, Matthew LaTulip, told Murray that evidence during bail hearings for co-defendant Stephen L. Henderson, 27, of Gary, showed that Blasingame was at the scene but was not the shooter. LaTulip said his client has cooperated with investigators.
Jacqueline R. Gardner was shot about 11:30 p.m. after returning home from work at Joe’s Crab Shack on U.S. 30 in Hobart.
Her live-in boyfriend told police he heard a struggle in the hallway of their apartment building, called 911 and found Gardner unconscious on the hallway floor.
Police said Gardner suffered a gunshot wound to the back and died at Methodist Hospitals Southlake Campus in Merrillville. Police found a 12-gauge shotgun shell in the hallway, and Gardner’s tip money from her restaurant shift was missing.
Henderson’s request for lower bail was denied and remains at $600,000. His case is set for trial July 14.
The girlfriend of the third man charged in the case, Michael A. Craig Jr., 24, of Merrillville, worked with Gardner at the restaurant, police said. Craig told police the three men went to Gardner’s apartment, waited for her to come home and followed her inside, with Henderson carrying a shotgun.