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Police Reports

Starke County Sheriff’s Department

Starke County Sheriff's Department BadgeIncidents:

1/19/15 – The Starke County Sheriff’s Department responded to a property damage accident in the Grovertown Truck Stop parking lot.

1/20/15 – The Starke County Sheriff’s Department took a report of a vehicle versus deer crash on State Road 39 north of State Road 8.

1/21/15 – The Starke County Sheriff’s Department responded to a vehicle versus deer crash in the 3100 block of north 900 East in Grovertown.

1/21/15 – The Starke County Sheriff’s Department, Starke County EMS and Hamlet Fire Department First Responders all responded to a rollover accident on U.S. 30 eastbound east of Old School Road.

1/21/15 – The Starke County Sheriff’s Department, Starke County EMS and Hamlet Fire Department responded to a single-vehicle accident on U.S. 30 west of U.S. 35 involving a tractor-trailer.

1/21/15 – A resident reported the theft of tools from an unlocked shed in the 5100 block of east 500 South in Knox.

1/21/15 – The owner of a home in the 4800 block of East Toto Road in Knox reported it was broken into.

1/21/15 – The Starke County Sheriff’s Department took a report of a hit-and-run accident in the Grovertown Truck Stop parking lot.

1/22/15 – The Starke County Sheriff’s Department responded to a vehicle versus deer crash in the 10500 block of East Iroquois Road in Walkerton.

1/23/15 – The Starke County Sheriff’s Department, Starke County EMS and Washington Township Fire Department First Responders all responded to a single-vehicle wreck at the intersection of 600 East and 200 North in Knox.

1/24/15 – Officers took a battery report from a patron at the Country Roads Bar in Walkerton. She told them she was sitting in her vehicle in the parking lot and said a woman pulled her out and started to beat her up.

1/24/15 – Officers responded to a property damage accident in the 4900 block of south Cranberry Lane in Knox.

1/24/2015 – The Starke County Sheriff’s Department responded to a property damage accident at the State Road 23 Marathon Station in Walkerton.

1/24/2015 – Officers and Starke County EMS responded to a property damage accident at the bowling alley on U.S. 35 in Knox.

1/24/15 – The Starke County Sheriff’s Department took a vandalism report in the 800 block of east State Road 10 in Knox.

1/24/15 – The Starke County Sheriff’s Department took a vandalism report in the 7200 block of south 300 East in Knox.

1/25/15 – The Starke County Sheriff’s Department, Starke County EMS, North Judson Fire Department and North Judson Police Department responded to a rollover accident at State Road 10 and 300 West.

1/25/15 – The Starke County Sheriff’s Department responded to a single-vehicle property damage accident in the 4400 block of south U.S. 421 in San Pierre.

1/25/15- The Starke County Sheriff’s Department responded to a single-vehicle property damage accident in the eastbound lane of U.S. 30 east of 600 East.

1/25/15 – The Starke County Sheriff’s Department responded to a single-vehicle property damage accident on U.S. 421 south of State Road 10 in San Pierre.

Arrests:

Inclusion in the arrest reports is not indicative of guilt. It is merely an acknowledgment an arrest was made. All defendants are innocent until proven guilty.

1/21/15 – David P. Howard, 31, Knox – Dealing in methamphetamine, illegal drug lab; possession or sale of precursors, maintaining a common nuisance.

Knox City Police Department

Knox City Police Chief Clint Norem

Knox City Police Chief Clint Norem

Incidents:

1/14/15 – A man came to the Knox City Police Station stating he got a letter from Verizon Wireless that his plan was successfully changed on his account and told officers he never had a Verizon Wireless account.

1/14/15 – The owner of a vacant lot at the corner of Ellis and East Streets reported the theft of metal signs. He says this is the second time they have been stolen.

1/16/15 – Officers responded to an alarm at Wallsmith Law Offices at 54 East Washington Street and found a window slightly open. An arrest was made.

1/19/15 – Hit-and-run charges were filed after a woman came to the police station to report her vehicle had been struck by another car in the Super Value Inn parking lot.

1/22/15 – A resident in the 1300 block of east Washington Street reported the theft of a refrigerator, table and grill from the garage.

Arrests:

Inclusion in the arrest reports is not indicative of guilt. It is merely an acknowledgment an arrest was made. All defendants are innocent until proven guilty.

1/16/15 – Jack Balje, 57, no address listed – Attempted Theft, Burglary and Theft.

Doug Vessely

North Judson Town Marshal Doug Vessely

From the North Judson Police Department:

Incidents:

01/19/15 – Police received a burn complaint in the 200 block of Leslie Street. The fire was distinguished.

01/21/15 – A report was taken about a telephone harassment complaint in the 200 Block of Maryland Street.

01/22/15 – A report of a scam was made to police involving a telephone caller posing as a Social Security Worker, looking for information and requesting account numbers. Luckily no information exchanged hands. Do not give any caller information over the phone. Other scams reported this week were calls with people posing as out-of-county police asking for bail money for a loved one, a police detective looking for information about a warrant for a loved one and than wanting the bail money up front as not to have the loved one arrested, and another involved a person acting as an IRS agent looking for account numbers and wanting money. Chief Doug Vessely urges you to not give out any information as the scams continue.

01/22/15 – Officers responded to an unwanted guest complaints in the 500 block of W. Talmer Avenue. The subject left and was given a no trespassing warning.

01/22/15 – Officer Brack Rowe conducted a traffic stop in the the area of Garden and Luken Streets. After a brief investigation the driver, Travis Jack Allen, 27, was arrested for driving while suspended-prior.

01/22/15 – A call of two females yelling in the area of the 400 Block of Keller Avenue was investigated. The women were disbursed as they arrived.

01/23/15 – A driver reported a car all over the road on 500 South near the 3000 West block. The caller obtained a plate number and followed the vehicle into the North Judson area. Police were unable to locate the suspect vehicle, however took a report from the victim.

01/23/15 – A woman in the apartments on Main Street reported harassing telephone calls, which is believed to be part of yet another scam. The resident was advised to get caller ID and not to answer the phone when that number or a blocked number calls.

01/23/15 – North Judson officers conducted a traffic stop in the Wilson and Weninger Street area and learned the driver was suspended prior. Kendra K. Kelly, 27, of North Judson was arrested and issued a citation to appear in court.

01/23/15 – North Judson Police Officer Scott Beishuizen made a traffic stop in the area of State Road 10 and 250 West which resulted in a passenger having a Knox City Court warrant. Ricky A. McAbee, 33, of Monterey was arrested and transported to the Starke County Jail.

01/24/15 – After a traffic stop, officers learned a wanted subject was staying at a local motel. North Judson police went to the motel and arrested Mary C. Gembara, 42, of North Judson on a Knox City Court Warrant for public intoxication and possession of marijuana. She was transported to the Starke County Jail.

Arrests:
01/22/15 – Travis Jack Allen, 27, of 5460 W. State Road 10, North Judson, IN was arrested for driving while suspended prior.

01/23/15 – Kendra K. Kelly, 27, of 6700 S. State Road 39, North Judson, IN was arrested for driving while suspended prior.

01/23/15 – Ricky A, McAbee, 33, of 10251 E. 775 S., of Monterey, IN was arrested on a Knox City Court warrant for failure to appear.

01/24/15 – Mary C. Gembara, 42, of 205 Leslie Street, of North Judson, IN was arrested on a warrant for failure to appear.

File Your Taxes, Complete Your FAFSA

College financial aidIncome tax filing time means it’s also time to see where you stand in terms of need-based college financial aid for the 2015-16 academic year. Ancilla College Executive Director of Admissions Eric Wignall says you need to have family income information handy before visiting www.fafsa.gov to fill out the necessary form. Last year’s tax information can be used to estimate, and this year’s data can be plugged in after taxes are finished.

Continue reading

IU Health Respiratory Therapist Discusses COPD Symptoms, Treatment

IU HealthChronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or COPD, is one of the leading health conditions in Starke County. IU Health Starke Hospital Respiratory Therapist Brittany Ward says smoking is the biggest contributing factor, but environmental and occupational triggers can also cause COPD. It has two components — chronic bronchitis and emphysema. Patients can have one or both. Ward says emphysema is more common in smokers.  Continue reading

LaPorte Police Arrest Armed Robbery Suspect

Jacob Borders

Jacob Borders

Authorities in LaPorte have arrested a man accused of robbing the Family Express on Pine Lake Road Thursday afternoon. Jacob Borders, 35, came into the store around 2:30 p.m., demanded money from the clerk and threatened to shoot her if she didn’t comply, according to a police department news release. She gave him money, and he fled in a tan Ford Explorer. Occupants of that vehicle flagged down officers en route to the call and told them they gave the suspect a ride to Family Express so he could use the ATM. They say Borders got back into the truck, told them he had just robbed the store and they needed to hurry. They told the police they ordered him out of the vehicle and said they believed he went into a home in the 400 block of Pine Lake Avenue. Continue reading

IU Health Starke Hospital Seeks Community Health Needs Input

IU HealthOfficials at IU Health Starke Hospital want input from members of the community as to the health needs that need to be met. Members of the public are invited to complete a brief online survey, which can be found at www.surveymonkey.com/s/inhealthneedssurvey. This is a first step to developing new programming. Additional information will be gathered through targeted focus groups later this year. Examples of successful programs developed as a result of these sorts of initiatives are the regional Women’s Fair and numerous other free screenings and other events held throughout the year. A link to the survey is also posted on the hospital’s home page at iuhealth.org/starke.

K-9 Assisted Traffic Stop Leads to Two Arrests

A Wednesday traffic stop at the intersection of Lake and McGill Streets in downtown Knox ended with a trip to jail thanks to assistance from Starke County’s new K-9. A deputy pulled over a vehicle driven by David P. Howard, 31, because he was known not to have a valid driver’s license. The vehicle was registered to the passenger, Brandy Gayheart, 22, of Walkerton. Continue reading

Hoosier Valley Railroad Museum Contributes Matching Funds for North Judson Railroad Project

North Judson Water TowerThe Town of North Judson has more than half of the matching funds needed for an INDOT Transportation Enhancement Project Grant. They’ve applied for $512,066 from the state to replace railroad ties along the town’s rail line. A 20-percent local match of 102,413.20 is required.

During this week’s town council meeting, Hoosier Valley Railroad Museum Secretary and Railroad Committee Advisory Member Mark Knebel presented a check to the town from HVRM for $51,015 toward the match and some supplemental work. The town of North Judson has also received $15,000 from the Starke County Economic Development Foundation towards the local match. Continue reading

State Officials Approve Limited River Otter Trapping Season

River OtterStarting this fall, Indiana will have a limited river otter trapping season after action this week by the Indiana Natural Resources Commission. In the early 20th century river otters were near extension in Indiana due to a loss of habitat and unregulated trapping. In 1921 the state Department of Conservation banned their taking. They were believed gone from the state by the 1940s.

The DNR began reintroducing otters to state waterways in 1995. Over a five-year period, 303 river otters were captured in Louisiana and released in northern and southern Indiana. Their populations increased enough through natural reproduction that river otters were removed from the state endangered species list in 2005. Presently, river otters have expanded their range to include over 80 percent of Indiana’s counties and their numbers continue to increase. Continue reading

Starke County Seeking Convention and Visitors Bureau Board Members

starke-county-courthouseThe Starke County Commissioners are struggling to fill out the county’s Convention and Visitors Commission Board of Directors. The nine-member panel was established according to state guidelines, which outline the political balance and other qualifications to serve.

Knox Mayor Rick Chambers is the city’s lone representative. The other eight members are appointed by the Starke County Commissioners. State law requires a simple majority, in this case 5 members, be engaged in convention, visitor or tourism business or be involved in promoting conventions, visitors or tourism. If available and willing to serve, at least two members must be engaged in the business of renting or furnishing rooms, lodging or accommodations as described in state law. Additionally, not more than one member may be affiliated with the same business entity, and no more than a simple majority of members may be affiliated with the same political party. Also, each board member must live in Starke County. Continue reading

Disturbance Call Leads to Meth Lab Raid, Arrests

Crystal Singleton

Crystal Singleton

Alexis Houston

Alexis Houston

A disturbance call to the Stay 4 Less Motel on U.S. 30 in Hamlet last night led to the arrests of two Knox women. According to a news release, deputies from the Starke County Sheriff’s and Knox Police Departments found items reported stolen from a Knox residence on Monday. Continue reading

Woodrow W. “Tom” Skillen

Funeral services for Woodrow W. “Tom” Skillen, 95, of Peru, formerly of Star City, are Sunday, Jan. 25 at 1 p.m. ET at the Frain Mortuary in Winamac. Visitation is Saturday, Jan. 24, 2015 from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. ET at the funeral home. Memorials may be made to the New Life Methodist Church in Mexico, Indiana or the Star City United Methodist Church.

Starke County Commissioners Continue Discussion of Vehicle for Coroner

Starke County CommissionersThe former Starke County Sheriff’s Department prisoner transportation van may be road-worthy in the mechanical sense, but it doesn’t provide the most dignified means of transportation for the recently deceased. That’s the consensus of the Starke County Commissioners after further discussion Monday night. Recently-elected coroner Adam Gray has access to a Starke County EMS vehicle on an as-needed basis but will eventually need something more permanent. The commissioners want to give him the Dodge Durango used by the Starke County Sheriff’s Department if it has adequate cargo space to meet his needs. Continue reading