Charges filed in Merrillville armed robbery, shooting

2013-02-01T19:45:00Z 2013-02-01T21:41:03Z Charges filed in Merrillville armed robbery, shootingChas Reilly chas.reilly@nwi.com, (219) 662-5324 nwitimes.com
February 01, 2013 7:45 pm  • 

MERRILLVILLE | Charges have been filed against five people police say were involved in a Jan. 26 armed robbery and shooting near a Merrillville school.

Nehemiah Barker, 18, of Hobart, Vernell Bassett, 18, of Merrillville, Lamario Delgado-Gonzalez, 18, of Hammond, Marcus Smith, 18, of Merrillville, and a 16-year-old Merrillville boy each were charged with intimidation and two counts of armed robbery.

The 16-year-old was not identified because he is a juvenile.

Court records state a teenager agreed to meet Bassett on Jan. 26 near Miller Elementary School so the teenager could give Bassett money that he owed him.

The teenager and his two brothers drove to the location, and a SUV occupied by five people was waiting there.

The teenager told police he gave Bassett the $20 he owed him, and Bassett later returned to the SUV.

Court records state another person, who the three brothers later identified as Smith, got out of the vehicle with a handgun, approached the three brothers and demanded money.

Smith told the brothers, "If you don't give me everything, I'm gonna kill you," court records state.

Bassett also approached the three brothers and pointed a gun at them, records state.

Police said the two people took two cellphones and cash from the three brothers.

Smith and Bassett then returned to the SUV and started to leave the area, according to court records. Police said the three brothers began following them in an attempt to obtain a license plate number to provide to police.

Smith is accused of firing multiple shots toward the three brothers. No injuries were reported, police said.

Through a picture lineup, the three brothers identified the suspects in the case, court records state.

The five suspects are members of the a street gang, according to court records.

Police said Smith is in custody and warrants have been issued for the other four suspects.

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