Law and Order Lake County
July 17, 2012 3:54PM
Updated: July 17, 2012 4:42PM
Don’t toss matches, cigarettes from car
Because of drought conditions that exist throughout the state Indiana State Police are watching more closely for motorists who throw lighted cigarettes, cigars or matches from their cars.
ISP Superintendent Paul Whitesell issued a memo that, in addition to local burn bans, the Indiana Department of Homeland Security issued a burn ban for 85 counties.
Troopers can issue citations for tossing burning materials from a moving car or for littering.
“We have the discretion to take enforcement action under these statutes, thus doing our part to protect the safety of the citizens, in addition to the natural resources of Indiana,” Whitesell said.
Man accused of child molesting
A Lowell man has been charged in Lake Superior Court with child molesting.
Scott Wright, 41, of the 23500 block of Tyler Street, faces from 20 to 50 years if convicted of the charge that he forced a 12-year-old girl to perform oral sex at a home in Lake County.
The girl told police Wright has forced her to engage in the same activity in the past.
Supplies needed for dumped horses
A man who is caring for four horses abandoned outside Lowell last week could use help with donations of necessary supplies, Lake County police Deputy Cmdr. Rob Arnold said Tuesday.
The four horses, rescued July 10 near Indiana 2 and State Line Road west of Lowell, were all malnourished. One had injuries that needed attention.
Terry Spoon is caring for the horses, but could use sawdust, hay, grain and farrier services, Arnold said.
A witness saw someone driving a black truck with a white horse trailer unload three horses more than a week ago in the area where they were rescued. The witness, a local farmer, was unable to see a license plate.
Lake County police are trying to locate the owners of the horses, including the fourth that was apparently not dropped off with the others.
Anyone wishing to donate money, services or supplies to aid Spoon as he cares for the horses can call the Lake County Animal Control and Adoption Center at 769-7016.
Man who aided in stabbing sentenced
A Hammond man was sentenced to six years for battery in a 2011 stabbing in Hammond.
Emilio Lewis Figueroa, 26, didn’t stab Christopher Tuttle, but “aided, induced and/or caused” the crime to occur and acted as an accomplice.
On Nov. 21, Figueroa and Tuttle were at a home in the 4800 block of Ash Avenue when they got into a minor altercation in which Tuttle punched Figueroa, who left the home and threatened to get his “brothers” and return.
When Figueroa returned with several other men, an altercation ensued in which Tuttle was stabbed. Tuttle suffered internal bleeding and a punctured kidney, along with back pain, scratches and bruises on both ankles and right elbow.
Lake Superior Court Judge Thomas Stefaniak Jr., ordered 240 days served in the jail, followed by two years in Lake County Community Corrections Kimbrough Work Program. The remainder of Figueroa’s sentence was suspended and served on probation.
Figueroa, who pleaded guilty to battery, had faced six to 20 years on the original charges which included aggravated battery.
Man attacked Wal-Mart security
Lake Superior Court Judge Thomas Stefaniak Jr. sentenced a Hammond man to eight years for battery.
Sean Pinson, 33, admitted he tried to leave the Schererville Wal-Mart on Feb. 2 without paying for merchandise when he was confronted by Aubrey Yates, an asset protection officer. Pinson sprayed Yates with a chemical substance and took off running.
Pinson had faced six to 20 years on the charge. His plea agreement spelled out the eight-year sentence and the dismissal of additional felony charges of battery, two counts of resisting law enforcement and theft.
Drunken man got a hold of cop’s Taser
A Hebron man has been charged with disarming a law enforcement officer, resisting law enforcement, public intoxication and disorderly conduct after police found him passed out behind the wheel of his car, which was running.
Matthew M. Hovanec, 34, was slumped over to the side in his Ford Explorer at about 2 a.m. Sunday in the parking lot of Buddy and Pals, 1206 E. Summit St., Crown Point.
An officer shut off the engine, which awakened Hovanec, who smelled of alcohol and had other signs of intoxication. The officer told Hovanec to cooperate so that a ride could be arranged to get him home safely, but he refused to step out of the car. The officer grabbed Hovanec’s left arm, but he pulled away and held onto the steering wheel with both hands.
The officer said he would use his Taser Hovanec, and he replied, “Go ahead and tase me.” Hovanec grabbed the Taser and a struggle ensured. The officer managed to get the Taser from Hovanec’s grasp and again tried to use it on Hovanec, but Hovanec struck the device, causing two darts to deploy into the officer’s right and middle fingers.
The officer underwent surgery to remove the Taser darts.
The charges are punishable by a maximum eight-year sentence.