Demotte man arrested on drug charges

MUG Michael Baggerly
Michael Baggerly

A Demotte man faces multiple drug charges after the property manager at the Winamac Fish and Wildlife Area reportedly spotted him tossing beer cans out of his vehicle Monday afternoon. Tom Despot notified conservation officer Jeff Richwine, who caught up with the suspect and initiated a traffic stop. That’s when he found out that Michael Baggerly, 37, was wanted in Jasper County. Richwine says Baggerly dropped methamphetamine in the seat of his vehicle after he was arrested. Additionally, Pulaski County Jail officers reportedly found a bag of marijuana in his pocket during the booking process. Baggerly faces charges of possession of marijuana, possession of methamphetamine and trafficking with an inmate.

Hotel Chain Eyes Pulaski County

  A Wisconsin-based hotel chain is considering an expansion into Pulaski County. John F. Seibert with Cobblestone Development says the first step is a feasibility study, which will take a couple of months.

He says there are a number of fairly large businesses within the community that would utilize a hotel if they had one. Currently, Seibert says companies like Plymouth Tube, Braun Corporation, Galfab and Wastequip are sending folks elsewhere in order to accommodate their lodging needs. Seibert anticipates constructing a 36 to 44 room facility, perhaps with a swimming pool and other amenities.

Seibert has expressed his interest in making a formal presentation to the Winamac Town Council during their March 11 meeting. Cobblestone’s first upper mid-scale hotel opened five years ago. To date the company has 21 hotels open, eight under construction and 35 under development in seven states.

Monterey Man Envisions Local Christian School

Culver Community School Superintendent, Brad Schuldt
Culver Community School Superintendent, Brad Schuldt
The vacant Monterey Elementary building could soon be a school again if a local man gets his way. Eugene Berg wants to turn the building into a private Christian school.

The Culver Community School Corporation still owns the building, although classes haven’t been held there since 2010. Culver Superintendent Brad Schuldt has formed a committee of school board members to meet with Berg and discuss options.

Monterey Christian School President Eugene Berg spoke recently with Culver Superintendent Brad Schuldt about options for the vacant Monterey Elementary building, and said he envisions establishing a private school that’s free from the restrictions that come with accepting vouchers from the state.

LaPorte Police searching for burglary suspect

Valentine’s Day was no cause for celebration for a LaPorte woman. She returned to her home in the 1100 block of 2nd Street Thursday to find it had been burglarized. Police say someone pried the back door open and took a television set, laptop computer and a wallet. The break-in occurred sometime between 8 p.m. Wednesday and 11:30 a.m. Thursday. Anyone with information about the burglary is asked to call the LaPorte Police Department at 219-362-9446 or visit www.lpcitypd.com to submit a crime tip.

 

Braun Corporation employees pay respects to founder

Employees of the Winamac-based Braun Corporation have a day off to pay their respects to the company’s founder and CEO. Ralph Braun, 72, died last Friday.

Members of the BraunAbility family are wearing blue ribbons in honor of Braun Corporation Founder and CEO Ralph Braun.
Members of the BraunAbility family are wearing blue ribbons in honor of Braun Corporation Founder and CEO Ralph Braun.
Braun Corporation founder Ralph Braun
Braun Corporation founder Ralph Braun

Braun built his first three-wheeled scooter in 1962 to overcome his mobility challenges brought on by a childhood illness. In 1972 he founded The Braun Corporation, which manufactures a full line of mobility products and employs more than 800 people. BraunAbility employees are wearing blue ribbons in memory of Ralph Braun. His funeral visitation is today from 11 a.m. until 8 p.m. Eastern at St. Peter’s Catholic Church in Winamac. Braun’s funeral mass is tomorrow at noon at the church, followed by entombment at St. Peter’s Cemetery in Winamac. His family encourages anyone who would like to pay tribute to his legacy and help make mobility affordable for people who need a little extra support to donate to the Ralph Braun Foundation. Visit www.ralphbraunfoundation.org for more information.

Marshall County Council sets wage for new probation officer

The new probation officer hired in Marshall County will make significantly less than the veteran who vacated the position. The county council set a starting salary of $16.44 an hour for the new hire, who will also be on a 90 day probationary period at 90-percent pay. The officer who left was making $22.22 an hour. Marshall County Council members noted the new hire will work his way up to a higher wage during his time of employment. Auditor Penny Lukenbill told the council it’s been quite some time since new employees have been hired and sought guidance on a pay scale for them.

Skydiving facility to remain at Plymouth airport

An aerial photograph of Plymouth Sky Sports facilities. Hazards and landing areas are depicted.
An aerial photograph of Plymouth Sky Sports facilities. Hazards and landing areas are depicted.

Marshall County’s full-service sky diving center is staying put for at least five years. The Plymouth Aviation Board approved a lease extension for Plymouth Sky Sports at Plymouth Municipal Airport. The lease starts at $450 per month and increases by three-percent in 2014 and 2015 and another three percent in 2016 and 2017. The lease amount is based on the square footage used by the business. Plymouth Sky Sports operates five days a week and also offers tandem demonstration jumps.

Police arrest Knox woman on murder charge

Kathleen Holt
Kathleen Holt

A Knox woman is jailed on a murder charge after reportedly shooting her boyfriend. Kathleen Holt, 51, shot the victim, Ron Worker, 46, also of Knox at a residence on CR 550 E. Near CR 200 S. in Knox around 3:30 p.m. Hold called 911 and told Starke County dispatchers she had just shot her boyfriend, according to police. Worker was was pronounced dead at IU Health Starke Hospital. An autopsy is scheduled later today. Holt’s bond hearing is set for 9 a.m. Friday. Police have recovered the weapon they believe was used in the shooting.

Rochester man jailed for using fake ID to buy meth precursors

James L. Foster
James L. Foster

A Rochester man police say used a dead man’s driver’s license to buy pseudoephedrine faces identity deception charges. James L. Foster, 56, used a driver’s license issued to Paul Bennett to obtain pseudoephedrine, according to authorities. Bennett died in 2010, and somehow Foster got obtained his driver’s license. The two men have similar attributes. Pseudoephedrine is one of the main ingredients in the manufacture of methamphetamine. State law limits sales of cold medications containing pseudoephedrine in an attempt to curb meth production. Court records indicate Foster displayed Bennett’s license while signing for pseudoephedrine on four separate occasions between June 15 and Dec. 29, 2012, at a Fulton County pharmacy.

Citizens are encouraged to report suspected methamphetamine activity by calling the anonymous Indiana State Police Methamphetamine Tip Line at 1-800-453-4756.

Burglary victim arrested for growing marijuana

Damon Morris
Damon Morris
William Dorris
William Dorris
Edward Carter
Edward Carter

A Fulton County man whose rural Rochester home was recently burglarized is jailed on drug charges. Edward Carter, 53, faces three felony charges of cultivating marijuana, possession of marijuana over 30 grams and maintaining a common nuisance. Authorities reportedly learned of Carter’s pot growing operation last month when a state trooper stopped to aid a disabled vehicle on U.S. 31 in Fulton County. The trooper arrested the vehicle’s occupants, William Dorris, 36, and Damon Morris, 34, after he spotted five marijuana plants and electronic equipment in the vehicle’s backseat. Court records indicate the pair had stolen the items from Carter’s home. They’re charged with felony drug and burglary charges. Police say they knew Carter through his adult daughters.
Officers then went to Carter’s home to discuss the unreported burglary and discovered a hidden room with a marijuana plant stem and hydroponic growing equipment inside, according to police records. They also reportedly found a small amount of processed marijuana.

Charges filed against Karma robbery suspect

 The 17-year-old Grovertown man police say robbed a Plymouth store at knifepoint will be charged as an adult. Corey Michael Sobieck is charged with armed robbery and intimidation. Both are class B felonies, and each carries a maximum of 20 years in prison. Police say Sobieck walked into the Karma Records store about 5:20 Monday evening, brandished a knife at the clerk, threatened to murder her and grabbed cash from the register. Plymouth Police apprehended him a short time later and recovered the knife in some nearby weeds. Sobieck is also on juvenile probation in Starke Circuit Court for conversion.

Pulaski County Sheriff warns of possible scams

Pulaski County Sheriff Michael Gayer
Pulaski County Sheriff Michael Gayer

If you get a phone call stating you’ve won $1 million, you may not want to quit your job just yet. Pulaski County Sheriff Mike Gayer says an area resident recently got such a call and was told he needed to send $1,500 to collect his winnings. Gayer says these scams are common and callers or written correspondence will actually use the name of a legitimate lottery or sweepstakes to further convince a potential victim.
Warning signs include a letter, email or text message announcing you won a prize in a lottery or sweepstakes you didn’t enter. Scammers also ask “winners” to send a fee or bank account details to collect a prize. Legitimate lotteries do not require you to pay a fee to collect winnings.

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LaPorte Police Department offers free medication disposal

LaPorte County Sheriff's Department
La Porte County Sheriff’s Office
Area residents with unwanted or expired pills can drop them off for safe disposal in LaPorte County. Safely disposing of pills keeps them out of landfills and local water supplies and also keeps youth from getting their hands on potentially harmful medications. Surveys find teens abuse prescription drugs more than any illicit street drug except marijuana. Youngsters frequently get pills from friends and family members.

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Winamac Police make four methamphetamine arrests

Sara Cox, Douglas Whiteman, Jayson Shaffer, Kelcie Miller
Sara Cox, Douglas Whiteman, Jayson Shaffer, Kelcie Miller

Formal charges are pending against four people arrested for possession of methamphetamine and syringes at a home in downtown Winamac Tuesday night. Jayson David Shaffer, 27, of Leiters Ford; Douglas Lane Whiteman, Jr., 27, of Winamac; Kelcie Miller, 21, of Winamac; and Sara Cox, 21, of Culver were all arrested by Winamac Police Officer Brian Gaillard. He received an anonymous tip of drug use at a residence on South Market Street residence and checked it out. The occupants gave him permission to search the house, and Gaillard said he found baggies of methamphetamine and drug paraphernalia.

Winamac Municipal Utility rates to increase

Winamac Town Hall
Winamac Town Hall
Winamac Municipal Utility customers will soon notice a slight bump in their water and sewer bills. The town council approved a rate increase following a Monday public hearing. Town Council President John Plowman says rates will go up by about $1 per month on each side of the bill this year and again next year, for a total rate increase of about $4 for an average customer over the next two years. The rate increase was prompted by an Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission ruling.

Winamac woman pays it forward with a haircut

Mary Perren
A Winamac hairstylist is sporting a new hairdo for a good cause. Emily Larkin agreed to shave her head once she raised $3,000 for Riley Children’s Hospital in Indianapolis. That’s where her sister, Christina, also a hairstylist, was treated as a teenager when she was diagnosed with Stage 4 Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. Larkin said her bold new haircut was inspired by the Indianapolis Colts cheerleaders who shaved their head in support of Coach Chuck Pagano’s leukemia diagnosis inspired Larkin to “take it off.” She nearly doubled her fundraising goal, thanks to generous support from the community. Her sister Christina did the honors during the halftime show of last night’s Winamac Community High School basketball game. Larkin said she “kind of likes” her new short locks, which she will be sporting for Christina’s wedding next month.

Plymouth airport may add hangars

Mary Perren

Marshall County pilots may soon have a new place to park their planes. The Plymouth City Council recently approved an ordinance that clears the way for the Aviation Board of Commissioners (ABC) to lease ground and allow private individuals to build hangars at Plymouth Municipal Airport. There’s currently a lengthy waiting list for hangar space. The aviation board is looking at a spot on the south side of the airport. It will require an easement from the neighboring storage units for access to the property. The roadway that was placed in the Greenlee administration was in the airport clear zone and has never been used to access.The ABC’s engineering consultants will assist in determining the correct location for building. Approval from the Federal Aviation Administration is also required.

Marshall County meth suspects jailed without bond

Mary Perren

A Marshall County man and woman are jailed without bond after police found multiple meth labs in their Argos home. Officers with the Undercover Narcotics Investigation Team, Indiana State Police and Marshall County Sheriff’s Office arrested 43-year-old David Howe and 35-year-old Kristi Messick-Eswick, also known as Kristi Miller following a Monday search of their residence on Hickory Road. Their initial hearing in Marshall Superior Court is set for March 12. Anyone with information about illegal drug activity in Marshall County is urged to call the anonymous tip line at1-800-899-0842.

Winamac woman pays it forward with a haircut

Mary Perren
A Winamac hairstylist is sporting a new hairdo for a good cause. Emily Larkin agreed to shave her head once she raised $3,000 for Riley Children’s Hospital in Indianapolis. That’s where her sister, Christina, also a hairstylist, was treated as a teenager when she was diagnosed with Stage 4 Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. Larkin said her bold new haircut was inspired by the Indianapolis Colts cheerleaders who shaved their head in support of Coach Chuck Pagano’s leukemia diagnosis inspired Larkin to “take it off.” She nearly doubled her fundraising goal, thanks to generous support from the community. Her sister Christina did the honors during the halftime show of last night’s Winamac Community High School basketball game. Larkin said she “kind of likes” her new short locks, which she will be sporting for Christina’s wedding next month.