Two Sentenced in Starke Circuit Court on Drug Charges

Two people were sentenced in Starke Circuit Court Wednesday morning on drug charges in two separate incidents.

Joshua Muzik, 20, of Monon, pleaded guilty in a plea agreement with the state to a felony charge of possession of methamphetamine and was sentenced on that charge to 13 months in the Starke County Justice Center with seven months suspended to be served on probation. He also pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge of driving while suspended and was sentenced to six months in the Starke County Justice Center. Those two sentences will be served concurrently, or at the same time. Continue reading

Brown Circle Project in Knox Complete

Knox Water Department cutting the road preparing to install new 6″ Ductile iron water line to replace the galvanized water line

The Knox Water Department completed the Brown Circle water line replacement project.

Water Superintendent Todd Gardner told the Knox Board of Public Works last week that the total cost of the project was just under $84,000. This included the installation of 1,440 feet of new six-inch ductile pipe to replace the much smaller galvanized water main that serviced the entire neighborhood. Three fire hydrants were also installed so the entire area is now able to receive adequate fire protection.

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West Central School Board to Meet Tonight

The West Central School Board will have several items to discuss when they meet for their monthly meeting tonight.

The board members plan to discuss the 2018-2019 course description books, appoint a member to the West Central Building Corporation Board and consider classified employee salary and benefits. Students of the month will be recognized and building principals will give reports to the board. Continue reading

Thanksgiving Celebration Set in Culver

A family Thanksgiving celebration event is planned in Culver for Friday, Nov. 17 at the Culver Beach Lodge.

Those who register can bring their small children to the event and enjoy a Thanksgiving show at 5 p.m. Dinner and crafts begin at 6 p.m. followed by an old trunk magic show at 7 p.m. ET. Organizers say food and crafts will be available in between or after the shows. Pizza will be served along with fruit, vegetables, apple cider, and hot chocolate. Continue reading

Three Facing Charges in North Judson Theft Investigation, Another Pending

Sean Wilson (top), Anthony Morales

An investigation into numerous thefts in North Judson has resulted in several arrests.

Sean Wilson, 18, and Anthony Morales, 18, were arrested for their alleged involvement in several burglaries, unauthorized entry into motor vehicles, and theft. They are suspected of these acts over the past few months in the North Judson area. Many of the reported incidents occurred in the overnight hours.

Wilson was arrested on Sunday, Oct. 29 and is being held in the Starke County Jail. Morales was booked into the Starke County Jail on Friday, Oct. 27 and faces a preliminary felony charge of burglary and a misdemeanor charge of theft.

Starke County Sheriff Bill Dulin said one juvenile faces charges in this case and one more arrest is expected.

Bass Lake Theft Investigation Results in Arrests

Anthony Lucas (top), Michael Ford

The Starke County Sheriff’s Department’s investigation into numerous thefts from vehicles in the Bass Lake area has resulted in the arrest of four teenagers.

According to Sheriff Bill Dulin, 18-year-old Anthony Lucas and 18-year-old Michael Ford reportedly stole items from unlocked vehicles during the overnight hours that span several days. Sheriff Dulin said the term is “car hop” is being used as this profiles that type of behavior.

Lucas and Ford are both from the Bass Lake area.

They were taken into custody on Tuesday, Oct. 24 and booked into the Starke County Jail on preliminary misdemeanor charges of theft and unauthorized entry into a motor vehicle.  They both remain in the Starke County Jail with a $5,000 bond.

Dulin said two other juveniles face prosecution in this investigation.

Community Crossings Paperwork Complete for Knox Projects

Knox Street Superintendent Jeff Borg told the Knox Board of Public Works last week that all of the paperwork has been submitted for the projects granted Community Crossings funds.

The grant agreement was signed and now the city is waiting for the funds to be deposited which could take four to six weeks. The city was awarded just over $455,000 in grant funds this year. Continue reading

Culver Town Council Approves Increased Pay for Advanced Paramedics

The Culver Town Council approved an ordinance amendment that increases the hourly wage for a new advanced paramedic to a range from $10.00 to $15.50 an hour beginning Nov. 1.

EMS Director Kathy Hart thanked the council and noted that the increase will help attract advanced paramedics to the department. She said several applicants have turned away from the position after learning that the wages aren’t comparable to other area departments. This will allow Culver EMS to be more competitive when seeking applications. Continue reading

Knox Board of Public Works Receives Updates on Unsafe Buildings

The Knox Board of Public Works learned that two property owners are working to update their unsafe structures with an attempt to eliminate demolition.

Lucia Valladares owns 6 N. Pearl Street and updated the board last week on her progress. She said she has hired a contractor to help her make the necessary upgrades as specified in the plans she gave the board a few months ago.

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Starke County Council Approves 2018 Budgets

The Starke County Council held the county’s 2018 budget and the 2018 Starke County Solid Waste budget adoptions in a special meeting Thursday night.

The Starke County Solid Waste budget totals $205,244 while the county’s 2018 budget totals $11,647,011 with a General Fund just over $7 million. The highway’s budget is just over $3.4 million. The Cumulative Bridge Fund was approved at just over $260,000.

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Starke County Police Agencies to Participate in Operation Pull Over Campaign

All four police agencies in Starke County will participate in the upcoming Operation Pull Over Campaign.

Chad Dulin is the coordinator for the Starke County effort. He told the Knox Board of Public Works members Wednesday morning that Starke County is getting 100 hours from the St. Joseph County’s Sheriff’s Department’s enforcement effort to participate in the campaign. Dulin said the county hasn’t been a part of an Operation Pullover campaign for some time and this is a way to get back into the program. Continue reading

Culver Town Council Discusses Request from Southwest Conservancy District

The Culver Town Council discussed a request from Southwest Conservancy District Representative Kathy Clark to expand the district in order to hook up two properties to that sewer system.

The agreement that the district has allows 175 hookups to the system and 168 are already connected. One family has petitioned to connect to the line as their septic system has failed. The property is contiguous to the district’s system that runs along West Shore Drive. The family plans to combine two lots with one house and request an easement on one parcel to allow a lateral line through the vacant lot on West Shore Circle. Continue reading

Concerns Surround Unsafe Building in Downtown Knox


The Knox Board of Public Works took action this week to enforce unsafe building violations on a downtown building.

The owner of 1 N. Main Street and 3 N. Main Street was previously told to replace glass from a broken window at the storefront at that location and it is currently boarded shut. Knox Mayor Dennis Estok said that the owner has had plenty of time to make the proper changes. He was given 45 days to make repairs on several violations within the buildings and Estok said nothing has been done with only a handful of days left on the time frame allowed for repairs. Continue reading