HOBART | A Hobart teen has been charged in connection with the stabbing death of a man during a fight outside a gas station, police said.
Marco Antonio Gonzalez, 17, was charged Monday in Lake Criminal court with the murder of Jesus Ibarra, 19, of East Chicago.
Gonzalez was charged as an adult through Lake County, Hobart police Sgt. Jeremy Ogden said.
This is the first homicide reported in Hobart his year, Ogden said.
Police were called on Saturday night to Family Express, 2 East Old Ridge Road, in reference to a fight in the parking lot.
When they arrived, police were met by four people, including a teen who identified himself as Gonzalez.
The four told police they had been approached by other teens and that after a heated exchange a fight had occurred.
The teens reportedly fled the scene in a maroon passenger vehicle.
Hobart police were called by Gary police at 11:52 p.m. Saturday in reference to a teen who died from an apparent stab wound at Methodist Hospital Northlake Campus in Gary.
The people who brought the teen to the hospital said they had been in a fight in either Hobart or Lake Station earlier that night.
Police took a statement from Gonzalez and he said he had walked to Family Express and while there he noticed some girls he knew talking to four or five people.
Gonzalez said one of the men said to him, "You want me to knock that smile off your face?"
A fight then ensued with one of the men slapping a cup of coffee out of his hand and another punching him in the face, court documents state.
At one point, Gonzalez said he pulled a knife out of his pocket he described as white and black Harley Davidson switchblade.
Gonzalez admitted to swinging his arm with the knife but he said given the man's thick clothing he didn't know if the knife had gone into his skin or not.
Gonzalez changed his account to police in subsequent stories, court documents state.
In one account, Gonzalez said his knife opened by push-button and that his knife was already open but he closed it as he approached the other man.
Ibarra was pronounced dead just after midnight at Methodist Hospital Northlake Campus in Gary, according to the Lake County coroner's office.