Obama to Speak on Boston Marathon Explosion

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The President is scheduled to speak at 5:11pm this evening after two people were killed and over 20 people were injured after two explosions near the finish line at the Boston Marathon this afternoon. Authorities says the explosions occurred hours after the winners crossed the finish line.
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Public Meeting Tuesday for Valpo PD CALEA Accreditation

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Valpo PD
The Valparaiso Police Department is scheduled for an on-site assessment as part of a program to achieve accreditation by verifying it meets professional standards.
Administered by the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies, Inc. (CALEA), the program requires agencies to comply with state-of-the-art standards in four basic areas: policy and procedures, administration, operation, and support services.
This accreditation assessment will be held April 14th through April 17, 2013.
As part of the on-site assessment, agency employees and members of the community are invited to offer comments to the assessors at a public information session on April 16th , 2013 at 6:00 p.m. held in the conference room at the Valparaiso Police Department located at 355 Washington St. or by calling (219) 476-7955 on April 16th, 2013 between the hours of 1:00 and 3:00 p.m.
Telephone comments will be limited to 10 minutes and must address the agency’s ability to comply with CALEA’s standards. A copy of the standards is available at the Valparaiso Police Department by contacting Sergeant Michael McLinn.
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Read more: Public Meeting Tuesday for Valpo PD CALEA Accreditation


Community Hospital CEO Appointed by Pence to NRDA

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Indianapolis, IN - Governor Mike Pence today announced the appointment of Dr. Donald Fesko to the Northwest Regional Development Authority in Lake County. The purpose of the seven member board is to fund and develop economic projects in northwestern Indiana.
"Dr. Donald Fesko demonstrates true leadership and the ability to make sound decisions," said Governor Pence. "He exemplifies good character and integrity that make him a good fit on the board."  
As the Chief Executive Officer of Community Hospital, Dr. Fesko oversees the day-to-day operations of the busiest hospital in Lake County. His tenure includes a list of successful accomplishments that includes being presented with the Robert S. Hudgens Memorial Award as the 2012 Young Healthcare Executive of the Year.
Prior to joining Community Hospital, Dr. Fesko was a practicing Optometrist with Munster Eye Care Associates. He holds a Masters in Business Administration from Indiana University, a B.S. in Economics from Purdue University and a Doctor of Optometry from Indiana University.
Dr. Fesko is a native of Munster. He lives in Dyer with his wife Katie and their three children.
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Read more: Community Hospital CEO Appointed by Pence to NRDA


Raynold P. Gore is US Marshals Fugitive of the Week

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rynold Gore
(Photo Courtesy of the US Marshals Service)
A self-admitted gang member wanted by the Lake County Sheriff's Department for felony murder and robbery is this week's U-S Marshals Service, Great Lake Fugitive Task Force, “Fugitive of the Week”. Authorities report 23 year old Raynold P. Gore was last known to reside in Chicago, but is known to frequent Gary and the region. Raynold Gore is described as a black male, five-foot eight, weighing 119-pounds, with black hair, and brown eyes. He has a tear drop tattoo under his left eye, and a tattoo on his forearm and chest, and scars on his left arm.
Anyone with information on Raynold P. Gore whereabouts may contact task force investigators by calling toll-free (888) 805-6119 or by texting “capture” to Tip411 (847411). All tipsters will remain anonymous.
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Read more: Raynold P. Gore is US Marshals Fugitive of the Week


Lugar to be Knighted

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Richard Lugar
Former longtime Indiana US Senator Richard Lugar will join the handful of Americans to be knighted by the British. Lugar serves as a professor at Indiana University. He will receive the rank of honorary Knight Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire during a ceremony at the British Embassy in Washington tomorrow// Tuesday.
From The Lugar Center: Her Majesty The Queen of England has bestowed upon retired U.S. Sen. Richard G. Lugar the rank of honorary Knight Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (KBE).
The presentation will be made to Lugar at the British Embassy in Washington, DC on Tuesday, April 16. Sir Peter Westmacott, British Ambassador to the United States will preside. Only royal subjects carry the title of "sir." Still Lugar joins a very select set of Americans to be knighted including Presidents Dwight Eisenhower, Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush; as well as Bill Gates, Rev. Billy Graham, Alan Greenspan, Douglas Fairbanks, Jr., Bob Hope and Henry Kissinger.
            Lugar ended his 36-year senate career in January as the Senate's most senior Republican member and its senior foreign policy statesman. His career accomplishments have included creation of the Nunn-Lugar Cooperative Threat Reduction program that has eliminated over 7,600 nuclear warheads in the former Soviet Union and continues to secure and destroy weapons of mass destruction around the world.
            Lugar was also the Senate leader on European security affairs and led U.S. efforts to support new members into the NATO alliance. In private life he continues working with British and European allies on energy security, weapons nonproliferation and global food security. To advance solutions in these areas he has founded The Lugar Center (
            Lugar has been busy since leaving the Senate. He heads the German Marshall Fund's Richard G. Lugar Institute for Diplomacy and Congress. He heads the Lugar Academy at the University of Indianapolis which includes a Washington, DC internship program.
            Lugar is a distinguished scholar and professor of practice at the Indiana University School of Global and International Studies and co-chairs the IU International Advisory Committee with former U.S. Rep. Lee Hamilton. Lugar is also a visiting distinguished professor of public policy at the Georgetown University Public Policy Institute. And he is a Counselor at the Center for Strategic and International Studies.
            Lugar, the recipient of 46 honorary degrees, was a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford University, England and remains active on the board of Trustees of the Pembroke College Foundation. His studies there were Lugar's first experiences outside the United States and he often credits this commencing his interest and eventual leadership in international relations.

Read more: Lugar to be Knighted


Westville Offenders Helping Cleanup Effort

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IMG 0299 WinCE
[Photo provided]
Minimum-security offenders from the Westville Correctional Facility will be among those cleaning up major U-S highways in the Region over the next couple of weeks as part of the Indiana Department of Transportation's annual 'Trash Bash' effort. Police say when encountering a work crew, slow down and remain alert for changing traffic patterns and motorists should not pick up hitch-hikers in the area of clean–up crews or correctional facilities. Westville Superintendent Mark Levenhagen says their crews’ goal is to pick up and remove about 60-75 bags of trash each day.
“We are happy to be a part of the state’s annual Trash Bash” said Indiana Department of Correction Commissioner Bruce Lemmon.  “Cleaning up Hoosier highways is one of the ways that offenders can give back to the community and turn doing time into doing good.”
Numerous state correctional facilities are working with the Indiana Department of Transportation (INDOT) and Adopt-A-Highway volunteer groups to clean up Indiana’s highways during the annual Trash Bash, which runs through April 28 and coincides with National Earth Day.
“Keeping Indiana’s highways clean costs the state significantly every year,” according to INDOT.  “By partnering with Adopt-A-Highway volunteer groups, sponsoring companies and the Department of Correction, we’re getting more done and taking more pride – while saving taxpayers money – in maintaining beautiful roadsides for motorists.”
Each year, hundreds of tons of trash are collected, sprucing up highways.  In 2010, 11,083 bags of trash and 79.5 tons of loose debris were collected from state highways and right-of-way areas.  This increased over 40% by 2012 to 15,812 bags.
INDOT encourages all Hoosiers to keep Indiana’s highways clean by following these tips:
Don’t litter:  Set a good example for everyone, especially children.
Be responsible:  Carry a litter bag in your car instead of tossing out the window.
Report it:  Report to local authorities areas where people have illegally dumped garbage.
Adopt it:  Individuals, families, school groups, sports teams, civic groups, scouting organizations, businesses and others are encouraged to participate in Adopt-A-Highway or other highway beautification efforts.
For more information on various INDOT programs, contact (317) 232-5509.

Read more: Westville Offenders Helping Cleanup Effort


Two Illiana Expwy Mtgs This Week

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A couple of forums are coming up this week on the proposed Illiana Expressway, and one of them is in south Lake County. The meetings, hosted by the Indiana and Illinois Departments of Transportation, are meant to explain the Tier Two process, where INDOT and IDOT say the focus will shift from the original 952 square-mile study area to the communities, landowners and access needs along the preferred corridor. The open houses will look at refining the preferred corridor, looking at interchange locations and layout, determining overpass and underpass opportunities, environmental analysis and continued outreach. The one in Lowell is scheduled for this Thursday [April 18
th ] at Lowell Middle School.
The meetings will be an open house format, and interested persons may attend anytime between 5:00 and 8:00 p.m. There will be a continuous PowerPoint presentation, and attendees will have the opportunity to view study exhibits and speak with IDOT, INDOT and study team representatives on a one-on-one basis. A question and answer forum will be held at 6:00 p.m. each day.
TIER TWO Public Meetings:
Thursday, April 18, 2013
5:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.
Lowell Middle School
19250 Cline Avenue
Lowell, IN 46356
Tuesday, April 16, 2013
5:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m.
Peotone High School
605 West North Street
Peotone, IL 60468

Read more: Two Illiana Expwy Mtgs This Week


Blood Glucose Meters Recalled

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Abbott today announced it is initiating a voluntary recall of FreeStyle InsuLinx® Blood Glucose Meters in the United States.  The company says to date, there has been one reported patient incident in the United States that may be related to this specific issue. The patient sought medical treatment, was diagnosed with hyperglycemia, treated and released. It has not been determined that the FreeStyle InsuLinx Meter was the cause.
The company has determined that at extremely high blood glucose levels of 1024 mg/dL and above, the FreeStyle InsuLinx Meter will display and store in memory an incorrect test result that is 1024 mg/dL below the measured result. For example, at a blood glucose value of 1066 mg/dL, the meter will display and store a value of 42 mg/dL (1066 mg/dL – 1024 mg/dL = 42 mg/dL). No other Abbott blood glucose meters are impacted by this issue.
Blood glucose levels at 1024 mg/dL and above are very rare. However, if high blood glucose levels of 1024 mg/dL and above do occur, they are a serious health risk and require immediate medical attention. As the FreeStyle InsuLinx Meter can display an inaccurate low result at a blood glucose level above 1024 mg/dL, there may be a delay in the identification and treatment of severe hyperglycemia, or incorrect treatment may be given. This could lead to serious injury or death.
Customers who are using the FreeStyle InsuLinx Meter should immediately take one of the following actions to address this issue with their meter:
    Customers can access a software update to resolve the issue at . The software update will allow customers to maintain settings and historical data on their meter.
    Customers can contact Abbott Diabetes Care Customer Service at 1-866-723-2697 to expedite return and replacement of their FreeStyle InsuLinx meter at no charge. Replacements are available, and Abbott will send meters to customers immediately upon request.
Until customers are able to update the meter software or until a requested replacement meter arrives, the current FreeStyle InsuLinx meter may be used; however, if patients experience symptoms that are not consistent with their readings, they should contact their healthcare professional and follow his or her treatment advice.
"Our first priority is to safeguard the health and safety of patients," said Heather Mason , senior vice president, Diabetes Care, Abbott. "We are committed to ensuring that our customers are able to continue to test their blood glucose with confidence, and we initiated this voluntary recall to ensure our products continue to meet the highest standards of quality and safety. We regret any inconvenience this action may cause."
The company is notifying all registered users, healthcare professionals, pharmacies and distributors where the FreeStyle InsuLinx Meter is sold. Abbott estimates that there are approximately 50,000 active FreeStyle InsuLinx Meter users in the United States. Upon identifying the issue, Abbott promptly developed and implemented an update to the meter.

Read more: Blood Glucose Meters Recalled


Waterway Cleanup Almost Complete

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Officials say they believe they know now what led to an oil sheen on Cady Marsh Ditch in Lake County last week. "At this point what appears to have happened is that due to the heavy rains, there were some misplaced totes that were leaking that happened to discharge to a storm sewer that leads to the Cady Marsh Ditch," said Jacob Hassan, on-scene coordinator for the US Environmental Protection Agency, who said said the totes were 330-gallon poly, or plastic, totes. He says the source has been determined, but is not being identified, as the investigation continues. "The responsible party has been very cooperative and has been willing to work with us, and things have been going very smoothly," Hassan said.  Hassan says he anticipates cleanup could be complete by Tuesday or Wednesday. The waterway flows from Calumet Township to Munster, emptying into the Little Calumet River.
Hassan says the sheen was called in late Wednesday night last week by a concerned citizen who happened to be driving past Ross Road and noticed a significant sheen on the river, and made a phone call to the National Response Center, which is operated by the US Coast Guard, who then contacted the EPA. You can hear more of today's  interview with Jacob Hassan from the US EPA at news audio on demand at Regionnewsteam-dot-com.

Read more: Waterway Cleanup Almost Complete


Large Knife Leads to Arrest at Middle School

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Police in Valparaiso say a seventh grader from Thomas Jefferson Middle School was arrested after school officials found a large knife inside his locker. School officials say they learned a seventh grader was in possession of and had been displaying a dagger on the school bus. A school official accompanied with a school resource officer searched the locker of the seventh grader. Police say school officials spoke with the student and received conflicting explanations for why the student allegedly brought the knife to school. The student was arrested Friday and charged with Possession of a Knife on School Property, a Class B Misdemeanor, and taken to the Porter County Juvenile Center.

Read more: Large Knife Leads to Arrest at Middle School


Crown Point Planners Look at Sign Laws

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A sign of the times in Crown Point -- questions over signage. With more and more requests for signs, and changes to existing ones, city planners are taking a new look at their local laws governing sign size and placement and brightness and, even what constitutes a sign itself. The city is also pondering the possibility of reducing the amount of space between billboards.

Read more: Crown Point Planners Look at Sign Laws


Over Half of Hoosier Smokers Tried to Quit

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A Ball State University study says more than half of Hoosier smokers tried to kick the habit and stopped smoking for at least one day in the past year in their attempt to quit. The report, “The Burden of Adult Smoking in Indiana 2012” shows Indiana with the 7th highest smoking rate in the nation. Over a quarter of the adult population were identified as smokers, with the highest percentage per age group being 25 to 44 year olds. Data show 97-hundred people in Indiana died and four-point-seven billion dollars was spent on annual health and other economic costs as a result of tobacco use in 2010.
For more info, visit

Read more: Over Half of Hoosier Smokers Tried to Quit


April 15 - Tax Day is Here

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April 15 has arrived -- Tax Day.  The Indiana Department of Revenue says filing online is the fastest and easiest way to make sure your return gets processed quickly. Indiana has a free method for filing both your state and federal taxes. It's Indiana freefile. About 1 million Hoosiers qualify for this free service. Go to  to find out if you qualify.
You can hear more about tax day and filing your state taxes at News Audio on Demand here at our website, from an interview with Chetrice Mosley with the Indiana Department of Revenue.
If you're not going to make the April 15 deadline, you state officials say you will need to file an extension of time to file. Here's more info:
To file an extension, first determine whether you are going to owe state taxes, receive a refund or break even. If you are going to owe taxes:
Download Form IT-9 from the state's income tax form list.
Figure how much you owe and mail your payment with the IT-9.
Pay at least 90 percent of the tax you are going to owe.
You will have until June 17 to file your return along with the rest of your payment.
Note: Penalties for late filing are waived, but you will still be liable for interest accrued or any unpaid amount.
If you are not going to owe taxes and will receive a refund or break even, you will need to keep the following in mind:
If you have filed for a federal extension of time to file (IRS Form 4868), then you won't need an additional extension for Indiana filing purposes. A federal extension of time to file extends your filing period with Indiana to November 15.
If you don't have a federal extension, complete Form IT-9, get it postmarked by April 15 and file your tax return by June 17.
Even if you owe no tax liability, you still must file. You can still be charged late filing penalties if you don't file on time.
If you are in the military, Indiana has special filing considerations. The Indiana Department of Revenue's Information Bulletin #27 provides details about extensions, taxability of income, deductions and a range of information for those serving in the military. If you or your spouse is serving in a combat zone, this bulletin has tax information specific to your situation. You can also visit  for helpful information for military personnel.
The Department of Revenue offers a short video to help taxpayers understand how to file an extension. To watch the video, please visit
And for more information about filing an extension of time to file, visit

Read more: April 15 - Tax Day is Here


Career Ed Bills Signing Today

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Indiana Governor Mike Pence will join Lt. Governor Sue Ellspermann, Senate President Pro Tem David Long, House Speaker Brian Bosma, Senate Minority Leader Tim Lanane, and House Minority Leader Scott Pelath today// Monday to sign career education bills, SB 465 and HB 1002, which both passed with unanimous, bipartisan support from the Senate and House.
Senate Bill 465 is the Indiana Works Council bill designed to boost vocational education. House Bill 1002, the Indiana Career Council bill, is meant to better coordinate the state's job skills and training systems with what's being sought in today's workforce.
Last week, Governor Pence signed nearly three dozen bills into law, including a measure that increases the fine for illegal parking in a handicapped spot from fifty to one-hundred dollars... and SB 153, which would exempt a child who is employed or works as a youth athletic program referee, umpire, or official from the state's child labor law.

Read more: Career Ed Bills Signing Today


Spring Bills Include Flood Fighting Fee

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A new 45-dollar fee is popping up on Spring property tax bills for many residents of Lake County. A measure, signed into law last year, establishes a new annual fee for property owners who live in the watershed of the Little Calumet River and Burns Waterway in Lake County, meant to fund maintenance and repairs of river levees to protect residents and businesses from floodwaters. The fee is 90-dollars for agricultural land, 180 for commercial property, and 360-dollars for industrial or public utilities. House Bill 1264 also established a new Little Calumet River Basin Project Advisory Board to oversee repairs, and required the Little Calumet River Basin Development Commission to expand its membership from five to nine.

Read more: Spring Bills Include Flood Fighting Fee


Gary Woman Critically Hurt in Crash

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Indiana State Police say alcohol is believed to be a factor in a single-vehicle rollover crash on I-65 just south of the 15th Avenue exit in Gary Saturday night that critically injured the driver. Troopers say 27-year-old Jennelle Taylor of Gary was not wearing a seat belt and was ejected from the vehicle, which police say rolled over four to five times. Authorities say there was no one else inside the car.

Read more: Gary Woman Critically Hurt in Crash


Dolton Man Victim of Homicide

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Late Sunday night, the Lake County Coroners office says a Dolton man died at a Hammond hospital after suffering multiple gunshot wounds at his Dolton apartment. Officials identified the homicide victim as 27-year-old Keith Daniels, and Dolton Police are investigating.

Read more: Dolton Man Victim of Homicide


Troopers Warn of Meth Lab Trash

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With Spring here and more people out jogging or bike riding, Indiana State Police are warning Hoosiers to beware of meth lab trash that can include things like battery casings, zip style plastic bags, empty blisters pack and containers like pop bottles that contain a granular material.
The Indiana State Police Meth Suppression Section says the trash may contain chemicals that are toxic, flammable, corrosive, and acidic. The combination of these chemicals could cause an explosion, fire or burns if they come into direct contact with the skin. Police say “meth cooks” use a variety of containers to manufacture the drug, a popular one being a half gallon gas can. Troopers say the cans appear to be new and have been found along the roadside by unknowing people who believe that they have found a new gas can and end up with a working meth lab.
Sergeant Mike Toles and Master Trooper Andy Smith, Indiana State Police Meth Suppression Section, have identified some points for the public to keep in mind.
• Meth cooks are using a variety of containers to manufacture their product. A popular container is the one and a half gallon gas can. These cans appear to be new and have been found along the roadside by unknowing people who believe that they have found a new gas can and end up with a working meth lab.
• Other Items to be aware of include battery casings, Ziploc style bags, empty blister packs, and containers (pop-bottles, jars, etc.) that contain a granular material. They may or may not have a tube extending out of the top depending on whether it is a hydrochloric gas generator (HCL) or a one pot reaction. Both of these are extremely hazardous.
• Be aware of any type of cylinder found in an odd place (middle of a field, ditch line, wooded area) that has a modified valve. The valve will typically be modified in some way and will have a bright blue color to it. These cylinders are used to store or transport anhydrous ammonia, which is an extremely dangerous gas when direct contact or inhalation has occurred.
If someone comes across this type of trash, they should not handle it. Instead, contact your local  Indiana State Police Post or call Indiana State Police toll-free (800) 552-0976 (Indiana only). Any questions or concerns about meth can be directed to the Meth Suppression Section at (877) 855-METH or online at

Read more: Troopers Warn of Meth Lab Trash


Updated High School Challenge Schedule

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Saturday, April 13th

4:00 p.m. - *Kankakee Valley vs. Thea Bowman

7:00 p.m. - *Bishop Noll vs. Lowell

Monday, April 15th

4:30 p.m. - *Lake Station vs. River Forest

Tuesday, April 16th

4:30 p.m. - *West Side vs. Gavit

Wednesday, April 17th

6:30 p.m. - *North Newton vs. South Newton

Friday, April 19th

4:30 p.m. - *Lew Wallace vs. Roosevelt

7:30 p.m. - *East Chicago vs. MC Marquette

Saturday, April 20th

1:00 p.m. - *Michigan City vs. Boone Grove

4:00 p.m. - *Chesterton vs. Griffith

7:00 p.m. - *Victory Christian vs. Calumet Christian

Tuesday, April 23rd 

7:30 p.m. - *Hales Franciscan vs. St. Patrick

*indicates home team
HS Challenge at US Steel yard ...

Read more: Updated High School Challenge Schedule


Michigan City Man Sentenced for Fatal July 2012 Crash

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On July 19th, 2012 Katherine Atkins was negotiating a curve while traveling east on Joliet Road in rural La Porte County, when the vehicle was suddenly struck by a westbound vehicle.  As a result of the crash, Ms. Atkins was pronounced deceased at the scene.  Three children inside Ms. Atkins vehicle were injured as a result of the crash. The other vehicle was found to be driven by Mr. John MIKLE.  Initial responding Deputies from the La Porte County Sheriff’s Office at the crash scene activated the newly developed La Porte County FACT (Fatal Alcohol Crash Team). 

An ongoing investigation by FACT members determined that Mr. MIKLE had an extremely high level of the drugs of PCP and Marijuana in his bodily system at the time of the crash.  In August, an arrest warrant was issued for Mr. MIKLE for the offenses of Operating While Intoxicated, causing a death and serious bodily injury.  It was determined that Mr. MIKLE had fled the area.  The assistance of the United States Marshals was solicited who subsequently located Mr. MIKLE within a relatively short amount of time in South Bend, Indiana.

Based upon the extensive investigation of FACT, a guilty plea was entered by
Mr. MIKLE. Mr. MIKLE pled guilty to Operating While Intoxicated, B-Felony, and two counts of Operating While Intoxicated D-Felony.  On April 11th, 2013, in the La Porte County Circuit Court, Mr. John Mikle was sentenced by the Honorable Judge Thomas Alevizos.  Mr. MIKLE was sentenced to a total of sixteen (16) years in the Indiana Department of Corrections.  Mr. MIKLE will serve twelve (12) years with four years suspended.  Mr. MIKLE was remanded back to the custody of the La Porte County Sheriff.

The conclusion of this case is a significant event for La Porte County FACT due to its recent establishment.  La Porte County FACT is grant funded by the Indiana Criminal Justice Institute and is overseen and monitored by the Governor’s Council on Impaired and Dangerous Driving.  
LapPorte County Sheriff logo - this one  
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Read more: Michigan City Man Sentenced for Fatal July 2012 Crash


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Region News Team
Region News Team
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Region News Team
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Region News Team


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