1 dead, 3 in custody after police chase in Hobart, home invasion in Porter County

2012-08-08T19:00:00Z 2012-08-09T13:13:06Z 1 dead, 3 in custody after police chase in Hobart, home invasion in Porter CountyBy Lindsay Machak lindsay.machak@nwi.com, (219) 933-3246 nwitimes.com

HOBART | One man is dead after he and three other men allegedly forced their way in to a woman's home and then were chased by her neighbor, officials said.

A 52-year-old woman called Porter County police at 5:04 p.m. and reported three men had forced themselves through her door, displayed a gun and robbed her, Porter County Sheriff's Department spokesman Larry LaFlower said.

“She said they came in, and an undisclosed amount of cash and guns were taken from the residence,” he said. “Then she said her neighbor chased after them, and he's the one who kept dispatchers informed as to their location.”

The chase began at the home in the 100 South block of County Road 450 West in Porter Township and ended in Hobart near the intersection of U.S. 30 and Colorado Street.

The suspects' vehicle, which had Illinois license plates, crashed in the Hobart intersection, LaFlower said.

Four men got out of a silver four-door sedan and started running after the crash, Hobart Police Chief Jeff White said.

FBI agents just happened to be at the gas station nearby and chased the suspects, White said.

One man was taken into custody immediately.

Two men fled through the businesses near the intersection and were taken into custody by police.

A fourth man died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound near the intersection of U.S. 30 and Colorado Street, police said.

Lake County coroner's office was on the scene late Wednesday and the crime lab also was processing the area.

The neighbor of the woman was shot in the hand at some point during the pursuit, White said.

He was taken to St. Mary Medical Center in Hobart, where he was being treated for his injuries late Wednesday, officials said.

The woman was taken to Porter hospital to be treated for injuries suffered when three of the four suspects kicked and punched her inside her home, LaFlower said.

Police were looking for weapons that may have been discarded during the pursuit, White said.

“A lot of stuff happened in a very short time,” he said.

Investigators from more than five local police departments as well as state and federal officials were helping to process the large crime scene, which is in the middle of a heavily populated area near Westfield Southlake mall.

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