Jury Returns Guilty Verdicts Against Chavez

 A jury of eight women and four men deliberated for about 90 minutes Friday night before returning guilty verdicts against Gary Chavez. He’s the Knox man accused of murdering his estranged wife, Kimberly Chavez of Portage, at his rural California Township home last June 6th, kidnapping an employee from Mark Bailey’s Discount Center and carjacking a couple in English Lake. Continue reading

Immediate Area Included in Gov. Pence Disaster Declaration Request

Indiana Governor Mike Pence

Indiana Governor Mike Pence

Indiana must now wait following a formal request to the U.S. Department of Agriculture asking for a Disaster Declaration.

Governor Mike Pence sent the letter – which states 53 of Indiana’s 92 counties are in need of assistance due to rains and flooding that damaged crops across the Hoosier State. Indiana experienced record rainfall in June of this year, with the first half of July showing strong precipitation in the immediate area.
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Starke County CASA Seeks More Volunteers

 

In Starke County, on average , 27 children who have been abused or neglected are involved in the court system every year. The main goal of a CASA is to ensure the needs of those children are met. CASA stands for court appointed special advocate and the program provides volunteers to advocate for abused and neglected children involved in the court system. Starke County CASA is searching for more volunteers for their upcoming training class scheduled to commence August 11. Continue reading

Starke County Youth Club Receives Generous Donation from 1st Source Bank

1stSourceBank

1st Source Banking Manger Judy Caudill assisting SCYC members

The 1st Source Corporation, the parent company of 1st Source Bank is the largest locally controlled financial institution headquartered in the northern Indiana-southwestern Michigan area and has assets of $5.01 billion. For more than a century, 1st Source has been committed to the success of the communities it serves. Continue reading

Murder Defendant Testifies, Closing Arguments Anticipated This Afternoon

 The fate of a Knox man accused of killing his estranged wife, kidnapping an employee from Mark Bailey’s Discount Center and stealing another vehicle in English Lake will soon be in the hands of a jury. Closing arguments are anticipated later today in the trial of Gary Chavez.

He was the lone witness for the defense and offered an often emotional account of his relationship with victim Kimberly Chavez. He said he felt “totally different” from the first time he went out with her and described their marriage as happy, affectionate and loving. Chavez admitted they argued about her son and some about money toward the end of their relationship. According to him they separated for 35 days about a decade into their marriage but reconciled and all was forgiven. Continue reading

State Rests in Murder Trial, Chavez Testimony Expected Tomorrow

 The state has rested its case in the trial of a Knox man accused of killing his estranged wife. Defendant Gary Chavez is expected to take the stand tomorrow morning as a witness for the defense. He’s also charged with kidnapping and carjacking in connection with the events that occurred on June 6, 2014. The Starke County Sheriff’s Office got a 911 call at 3:37 that afternoon from a man in English Lake reporting a carjacking. Earlier testimony indicates that’s where Chavez left kidnapping victim Bryant Wagner when his car ran out of gas. Det. Rob Olejniczak from the Starke County Sheriff’s Office testified that based on information from Wagner he went to Mark Bailey’s Discount Center and found the pickup truck Chavez left in the parking lot. Continue reading

State Could Rest in Murder Trial Today

 The state could wrap up its case this afternoon against a Knox man charged with murder, kidnapping and carjacking. They’ve called 12 witnesses so far to testify against Gary Chavez. He’s accused of killing his estranged wife, Kimberly Chavez, at his rural Knox home last June 6th, driving his pickup truck to Mark Bailey’s Discount Center, kidnapping an employee at gunpoint, driving his car to English Lake and stealing a Jeep Grand Cherokee from a couple there. Continue reading

Knox City Council Discusses Community Center Modifications

Nancy J. Dembowski Community Center

Nancy J. Dembowski Community Center

During the Tuesday evening Knox City Council meeting revisions to the Community Center were considered. New thermostats will be put in place to help reduce heating and cooling costs. There was also some discussion about replacing the current roof with a metal one. Continue reading

KHS Laptop Pick-Up Dates Provided

macbookStudents attending Knox Community Schools will have their first official day on Tuesday, August 4th. Prior to that first day back, high school students must obtain their laptops from the school. This can be done during Freshman orientation on July 31st from 8 until 11 am or during back-to-school night on August 3rd from 4 until 6 pm. Orientation pick-up is limited to Freshman students only. Continue reading

WoodStarke Fundraiser Concert Scheduled Saturday

woodstarkeWoodStarke is less than a month away and as event planners prepare for the family-friendly festival in the park, money is still needed in order to rent a center stage for performers to use. In an effort to raise funds, this weekend individuals can get a sneak peak of a few of the bands that will be playing during WoodStarke. Continue reading

Murder Defendant Intends to Testify During Trial

  Murder defendant Gary Chavez plans to testify in during his jury trial in Starke Circuit Court. Defense attorney David Welter told Starke Circuit Judge Kim Hall this morning that is his client’s intention. Chavez does have the right to change his mind at any time. Continue reading

Doctor to Testify in Chavez Murder Trial

 The doctor who did the autopsy on a Portage woman who was found dead at a rural Knox home last June is scheduled to testify today in the murder trial of her accused killer. Gary Chavez is charged with murder in connection with his estranged wife, Kimberly Chavez’, death. He is also charged with kidnapping and carjacking in connection with other incidents that occurred on June 6, 2014. Several police officers and evidence technicians are also on today’s witness list. Continue reading

Knox Street Department to Inspect Alleyway

City_of_Knox_LogoDuring their meeting yesterday evening the Knox City Council acted on a request from a citizen that was initially brought to their attention during a meeting earlier this month. At the July 15th meeting, local resident Steven Dodge presented a petition to establish a street on an existing city right-of-way to divert people away from the unofficial alley currently being used on his property at 801 S Bower St. At that meeting Dodge also showed the council research dating back to 1895 that showed a 33-ft-wide street was dedicated there between Portland and Bower streets. Continue reading

Kidnapping Victim Testifies in Chavez Trial

 The Knox man who claims he was kidnapped from Mark Bailey’s Discount Center last June by a murder suspect was the first witness to testify in his trial. Gary Chavez is also on trial for kidnapping and carjacking stemming from a June 6, 2014 incident. He’s accused of stabbing his estranged wife, Kimberly Chavez, to death at his rural California Township home, driving to Mark Bailey’s and kidnapping employee Bryant Wagner at gunpoint as he sat in his 2005 Monte Carlo in the store parking lot. Continue reading

Opening Arguments Scheduled Today in Starke County Murder Trial

 The state will begin presenting its case today against the Knox man who is accused of killing his estranged wife, kidnapping an employee from Mark Bailey’s Discount Center and stealing a car from a couple in English Lake. Gary Chavez is on trial for murder, kidnapping and carjacking in connection with the June 6, 2014 incidents. His trial started yesterday with jury selection, which took the entire day. Continue reading

Kids Closet Ministry’s Pack-A-Backpack Event is Back!

pack a backpackStarke County students who receive either free or reduced lunch during the school year have a chance to receive a backpack full of free supplies tonight or tomorrow at the North Judson United Methodist Church fellowship hall. Continue reading