With the case at its six-month mark since their arrest, four individuals allegedly involved in an animal fighting contest in February have been given another week for their attorney, Doug Shaw from Crown Point, to work with Starke County Prosecutor Nick Bourff to formulate an acceptable plea agreement. A request for change of venue by the defense was also denied. The defendants, Gilberto Narravo, Salvador Reyes, Juan Carlos Rodriguez, and Arnoldo Perez, were present in the Starke Cirtcuit courtroom with their wives acting as translators.
Shaw requested a deposition to determine who took the photographs of the scene that will be entered into evidence to ensure that the source is known; however, Shaw said the current trial date of Oct. 12 is not enough time for the defense or the state to come up with this information. Shaw and Bourff requested that Judge Kim Hall push the trial date later to allow them more time for discovery, but Hall was not pleased with the idea.
Because the case has been going on for over six months, Hall felt both sides have had more than enough time to get their information together. However, Judge Hall agreed to extend the plea deadline by eight days to allow Shaw and Bourff to collaborate and try to come up with an acceptable plea agreement. The plea agreement deadline has been set for Sept. 23 at 4 p.m., but requested the plea agreement be submitted ahead of time so that date can be vacated. The trial for these individuals is still set for Oct. 12 if a plea agreement is not accepted.