New Chicago man acquitted of stalking former girlfriend
By James D. Wolf Jr. Post-Tribune correspondent April 25, 2013 11:30AM
Updated: April 25, 2013 9:38PM
VALPARAISO — A jury found a New Chicago man not guilty of stalking a former girlfriend while he was waiting trial on charges of torching her car and while in Porter County Jail waiting sentencing for that.
Brandon L. Scroggin, 29, is already serving a 19-year sentence for his August 2012 conviction of Class C felony receiving stolen auto parts, Class D felony arson and Class D felony intimidation, which is for his March 2012 theft of a vehicle used to go burn her car and hit her relative’s vehicle.
If the jury found him guilty of the Class C felony stalking charge, he could have served another eight years plus any habitual offender sentence enhancement.
Deputy Prosecutor Trista Hudson had dismissed six lesser invasion of privacy counts and argued that Scroggin made the calls -- some from jail -- to show he could still reach her, creating such a feeling of terror for her that she believed he was the one who burned down her new home.
Defense attorney Anthony Bertig argued that the calls from the jail the jury heard on tape were friendly and showed Scroggin apologizing, assuring her he didn’t torch her home and being concerned about his unborn child.