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Three Arrested for Multiple Thefts from Vehicles

Valpo PD
Three subjects have been charged in connection with multiple thefts from vehicles. Valparaiso Police report they responded to a report of a physical disturbance Saturday in the 22-hundred block of Yorktown Drive and upon arrival the subjects fled the scene but were located a short time later. Police say the subjects that fled were in possession of stolen property and an investigation determined the subjects had been involved with numerous incidents involving thefts from vehicles that had been occurring throughout Valparaiso over the past 30 days. Arrested were 36 year old Brian Oliver, 18 year old Thomas Sutton and a 17 year old Valparaiso resident. Police are attempting to return many of the items recovered and request individuals who recently had items taken from their vehicles to contact them. ...
 

Severe Thunderstorm Warning Until 6pm

1 breaking-news
The National Weather Service in Chicago has issued a Severe Thunderstorm Warning until 6pm for northwest Indiana. ...
 

Amtrak to Continue Hoosier State Rail Until 10/16

The Indiana Department of Transportation continues contract negotiations with Amtrak over the Hoosier State passenger rail service, which operates four days per week between Chicago and Indianapolis. INDOT Spokesman Will Wingfield says at this time, they know for certain Amtrak service will continue until at least October 16th.
Wingfield says meantime, contract negotations continue on a short-term plan to keep service running for a few months to allow for long-term discussions to happen.
In 2008, Congress voted to end federal support for Amtrak routes of less than 750 miles. Seven of the 19 states impacted had signed operating agreements as of the middle of September. ...
 

Man Falls Asleep at the Wheel, Crashes Vehicle

i-65 lowell car fire
(Photo Courtesy of INDOT's Facebook Page)

A Dephi, Indiana, man fell asleep at the wheel just before 12:30 this (Thursday) afternoon while heading north on I-65, two-miles south of the Lowell exit, causing a crash that closed all northbound lanes for less than hour.  Indiana State Police Lowell Post reports 20 year old Lucas Hunt fell asleep, causing his vehicle to go off the road and hit the concrete bridge abatement, which flipped the vehicle onto its passenger side and caused it to catch fire.  State Police say the passenger, 22 year old Thomas Storey, of West Lafayette, was able to free himself from the vehicle, while Hunt was removed by some Good Samaritans who stopped at the scene.  Hunt was hospitalized with broken bones and minor burns, while Storey was hospitalized after complaining of body pain.

 

Lock Down In Capital Lifted, Female Gunman Killed

1 breaking-news
Shots were fired outside the US Capitol this afternoon, with a capitol policeman injured and a female gunman reportedly killed. ABC's Ann Compton described the scene near where the incident occurred as the kind of protective response that Washington is now all to familiar with conducting. ABC's Jim Avila is outside the Capitol building and says access is still restricted, but the lockd own has been lifted on Capitol Hill - following reports of gunshots fired outside.

Sources say someone tried to ram a barricade near the White House with a car - and that the suspect - a woman - is dead at the scene. ABC News Senior Justice Correspondent Pierre Thomas - Our guidance is a female may have been neutralized in the car crash or by police fire - we're trying to get clarity on that. I think the fact that you're seeing the all clear means that law enforcement believes they have this largely under control. They will do additional checking just to make sure there is no suspect but this is starting to wind down. ...
 

US Capital in Lock Down

1 breaking-news
The US Capitol is in lock down after shots were heard Thursday afternoon. ABC's Jeff Zeleny reports he's talked to three senators who told him that they in fact heard gunshots outside of the Capitol building around the Dirksen Senate Office Building...just to give you a sense of where that is just across from the street from the Capitol. And Sen. Bob Casey of Pennsylvania said he heard three pops. Didn't think they were gunfire at first but Sen. Sherod Brown of Ohio walking nearby said he knew they were gunshots initially. He said there was all types of commotion after that. Senator Jeff Flake of Arizona confirmed the account, also heard shots. These senators we're told were told to get behind vehicles so they hid in place for a while and then were brought back in to the capitol. ...
 

Cappas Named Lake Superior Court Judge

Indiana Governor Mike Pence today named Sam Cappas as Judge in the Lake Superior Court Criminal Division. Governor Pence says Cappas has the legal skills and background necessary to serve the people of Lake County as Lake Superior Court Judge. Cappas has nearly 20 years experience as a public defender in the Lake County Superior Court System and worked for nearly five years as Deputy Prosecuting Attorney in the Lake County Prosecutor's Office....
 

I-65 Reopened After Closure

i-65 lowell car fire
(Photo Courtesy of INDOT's Facebook Page)
INDOT reports all lanes of northbound I-65 are now open after crash forced a closure south of the Lowell/Route 2 exit. No further information is available at this time on the cause of the accident that forced the closure, but there was a vehicle on fire....
 

Interview: 'Black Water' Back at Lowell School

Visit News Audio on Demand here at our website for our interview today with Tri-Creek Schools Assistant Superintendent Dr. Nathan Kleefisch concerning the discolored water at Lake Prairie Elementary School. 
Discolored water was coming out of some faucets at Lake Prairie Elementary School near Lowell Wednesday. The gray-colored water led to drinking fountains being turned off and bottled water being provided to students and staff as a precaution. The school is outside of town limits and not part of the municipal water system. It's an issue Tri-Creek officials have dealt with at Lake Prairie for years, including last year. School officials say the well water has been determined to be safe, despite its color, and that they've been working with state and county health officials. Dr. Kleefisch says the discoloration has varied over the years, with a variety of extremes, where at times it's looked like there's mud in the water....
 

NB 65 Closed Just South of Lowell

Traffic-Alert
12 noon -- Indiana State Police at the Lowell Post report all lanes of northbound I-65 are closed south of the Lowell/Route 2 exit due to an accident.  A caller to the Region News Team reports a vehicle on fire in the area.
We also have word from a caller of a backup in the area of northbound Cline Avenue in the Hammond area, with a car sideways blocking the left lane as you exit north from the Borman Expressway....
 

Suspicious Package Found to be a Cooler

Police say no explosives were found in a suspicious package that halted South Shore and Metra Electric trains in Chicago during Wednesday morning's rush hour. Police say what they did find was a large cooler that had a cellphone, wires, and a Thermos inside, and they say investigators were able to identify the owner and determine there were no malicious intentions on the part of that person. The trains were stopped around 7 am before the Van Buren stop after the package was spotted by a South Shore crew on a platform at the Van Buren station. All service resumed about ninety-minutes later. ...
   

Discolored Water Reoccurs at Lowell Grade School

Discolored water was coming out of some faucets at Lake Prairie Elementary School in Lowell Wednesday. The black water led to drinking fountains being turned off and bottled water being provided to students and staff as a precaution. The school is outside of town limits and not part of the municipal water system. It's an issue Tri-Creek officials have dealt with at Lake Prairie in the past, including last year. School officials say the well water has been determined to be safe, despite its color, and that they've been working with state and county health officials....
   

IUN's First Coffee with a Cop a Huge Success

IUPD-NW NowakGarcia
Chief Patricia Nowak and Officer Ricardo Garcia were on hand at IU Northwest’s recent “Coffee with a Cop” event, in which the campus and community came out to meet the campus officers in an informal, conversational setting. Nowak said the event was a huge success, and the IUPD-Northwest is planning on future meet-and-greets.
About sixty people came out for the very first "Coffee with a Cop" event hosted by the Indiana University Police Department-Northwest (IUPD-NW) at the campus cafeteria Tuesday.
IUPD-NW Chief Patricia Nowak said she was thrilled with the turnout for the inaugural meet-and-greet, in which officers engaged in informal conversation, providing campus and community members the opportunity to ask questions and learn more about the department’s work, both on the IU Northwest campus, as well as in the community, most specifically in Gary.  The conversations touched on such topics as careers in law enforcement, the desire for more citizens’ and kids’ police academies, and the IUPD-NW’s involvement in patrolling the University Park area immediately surrounding campus.
IUPD-NW MelvinBlakely
Sergeant Melvin Blakely, Jr. (foreground) speaks to a resident at the recent “Coffee with a Cop” event at Indiana University Northwest. The meet-and-greet attracted about 60 campus and community members who enjoyed an informal conversation with campus officers.
Overall, Nowak said the folks she chatted with expressed satisfaction with their safety and security on campus, appreciate the department’s presence immediately surrounding the campus and feel the officers are friendly and approachable.“It is important that the campus, and community, have an awareness of what we do, and how we serve,” Nowak said. “Building relationships builds trust.”
The university says a commitment to community engagement efforts, such as Coffee with a Cop, have become more greatly embedded into the mission of IUPD-NW since Chief Nowak joined the squad in July 2012. Similar community-based efforts include the Citizens’ Police Academy, the Youth Citizens’ Police Academy, and the annual Shop with a Cop program, among others. “The concept of community policing efforts is to build trust with our constituents,” Nowak said. “The IUPD-NW sees great value in getting to know, and serving the needs of not only the IU Northwest campus, but also the citizens of Northwest Indiana.”
The meet-and-greet was one of several such gatherings that are taking place nationwide as part of a U.S. Department of Justice initiative. Because of the high turnout and valuable information gleaned from the event, Chief Nowak anticipates hosting more meet-and-greet events in the future.
[Photos/Indiana University Northwest]...
   

Gary Signs Agreement with Humane Society Calumet Area

gary hsca
The Gary Animal Control Division has forged a partnership with the Humane Society Calumet Area out of Munster to assist with the intake of animals. The Board of Works approved the contract Wednesday. Commander Peter Sormaz of the Gary Police Department, who represented the City’s Animal Control Division during the negotiations, says Gary is not in a position to build a new facility at this time. Gary Mayor Karen Freeman-Wilson says she believes the plan will bode well with groups who have expressed concerns about the care and safety of the animals.  “We are extremely pleased with this agreement, and I applaud the Gary Police Department and the representatives from the Humane Society Calumet Area for their hard work in mapping out a plan that works well for both parties,” said Freeman-Wilson.  “The animals will continue to get the care they need," Sormaz said, "and we have gained a great partner in the Humane Society Calumet Area.”
According to the contract, the Gary Animal Control will transport animals to the Munster facility located at 421 45th St., and the City will pay the Humane Society $50 per animal per month for services performed. However, the Humane Society will waive the S50 fee for feral cats. The contract is not to exceed $82,000 annually and shall continue through December 31, 2014. The contract may be extended for up to four additional two-year terms so long as both parties agree.
Guardians who are looking to reclaim an impounded animal will pay a $15 fee for each day the animal has been impounded. Impoundment fees for less than three days will be waived. The Humane Society Calumet Area will begin providing services next week....
   

Ninety Region Group Home Residents Being Moved

Officials say ninety residents of group homes in the Region are being moved to other facilities, some as far away as Fort Wayne, as the state will not be continuing its provider agreement with The Arc of Northwest Indiana, a non-profit agency operating more than twenty group homes in the area for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Jim Gavin, director of communications and media for the Indiana Family and Social Services Administration, says the decision was made due to health and safety issues. Difficulty in providing adequate nursing services at the group homes was said to be a major factor in the move. ...
   

Rollover Semi Blocking Lane on I65 Near Lowell

Traffic-Advisory
Traffic advisory for south Lake County: Big backups on northbound I-65 approaching State Road 2 Lowell Exit, due to semi rollover northbound blocking left lane near the scales....
   

Minor Injuries in Lansing Helicopter Crash

Authorities say a 45-year-old Highland man was injured in a helicopter crash at the Lansing Municipal Airport Wednesday evening. Illinois State Police say an instructor and student were practicing hovering maneuvers around 5:15 when the helicopter struck the pavement, and that caused the aircraft to flip onto its side. Police say the student, Charles Fink, was taken to Community Hospital in Munster with minor injuries, and the instructor, 28-year-old Raymond Daniel of Schererville, was not hurt.  Also responding were Lansing Police and fire departments from Lansing and Lynwood....
   

No Injuries Reported in Cedar Lake Barn Fire

No word at this time on the cause of a barn fire in Cedar Lake Tuesday night. Several departments responded to the 10900 block of Parrish Avenue around 6:30, and the structure was described as a total loss. Fire officials say to their knowledge, no one was hurt and no animals were inside the barn. Cedar Lake was assisted by crews from Lowell, Lake Dale, Lake HIlls, St. John, Beecher and Crown Point. ...
   

Bike Trail Attack Reported in Glen Park

In Gary, police are investigating the report of a 21-year-old woman attacked by a man as she was walking along a bike trail on the south side of the city. The woman was in the area of 51st and Georgia in Glen Park around noon Tuesday when reports say a man grabbed her and knocked her to the ground. Police say she screamed and fought the man, who reportedly ran away from the trail area heading north. The victim was treated for scrapes. The suspect was not found. ...
   

Another Illinois-based company moves HQ to Indiana

After just appearing for a ribbon-cutting ceremony in Elkhart on Tuesday, and in South Bend the day before, Indiana Mike Pence returned to the Region for the groundbreaking of the new headquarters of Land O' Frost in Munster, Wednesday afternoon. 
Groundbreaking 1    10-02-13
(L-R:  Joseph Simonetto, Munster Town Council President; Donna Van Eekeren, Chairwoman of Land O' Frost; Governor Mike Pence; David Van Eekeren, CEO Land O'Frost) 
Land O' Frost is the nation's second-largest seller of pre-sliced, pre-packaged lunchmeats is relocating it's corporate headquarters from just over the state line in Lansing to a three acre campus in Munster.  Officials say the move to the new 27,000 square foot facility, which is scheduled to be operational in 2014, will create up to 50 new jobs.
Governor Pence joined company executivest at the Wednesday afternoon groundbreaking celebration where he pointed out that Land O' Frost was the 24th Illinois company to relocate  to Indiana since 2010.  The governor adding that he hopes those companies and this one will soon have "lot's of company in the years ahead."
Groundbreaking 2   10-02-13
(Van Eekeren family members and officials posing with Governor Mike Pence before one of the company's semi trailers)
(photos:  courtesy of Karl Berner)...
   

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