LAPORTE | A man who took an elderly woman's purse and stabbed her husband multiple times at a Michigan City shopping mall during the holidays has agreed to serve a 25-year prison sentence.
Willie Jones, 45, of Kendallville would also serve five years on work release followed by five years probation if a plea agreement is accepted June 26 by the court. Jones could have faced a maximum 50-year sentence had he taken the charge of Class A felony robbery to trial and lost.
"We had a good case and he deserves it. Every day of it," said Michael Bergerson, the lead LaPorte County deputy prosecutor in the case.
The 70-year-old Michigan City area man and 67-year-old woman had returned to their car at Lighthouse Place Premium Outlets on the city's northwest side a week before Christmas, when Jones approached the passenger side of the vehicle. He demanded her purse, and her husband, while coming to his wife's defense, was pushed down and stabbed multiple times in the torso.
Bergerson said the man, after an extended hospital stay, is now home, but suffered a stroke during his recovery.
Jones fled after the stabbing, allegedly with his accomplice and girlfriend, Kenisha Simpson, 29, of Michigan City.
Bergerson said no cash was taken, but an attempt was made to use the victim's credit cards at the nearby GoLo station soon after the attack. Surveillance video captured at the business helped lead police to both defendants less than 10 hours later.
Simpson, who drove the getaway vehicle, has her case still pending the possible entry of a plea agreement.