Gary man turns self in to police in Portage murder case

2012-11-14T20:00:00Z 2012-11-15T18:56:18Z Gary man turns self in to police in Portage murder caseBob Kasarda bob.kasarda@nwi.com, (219) 548-4345 nwitimes.com
November 14, 2012 8:00 pm  • 

VALPARAISO | A Gary man turned himself in to police Wednesday just hours after the Portage woman accused of hiring him to kill a tow truck driver had her initial hearing.

Dontaye Singletary, 20, was hired by Sheaurice Major, 42, to kill 72-year-old Carl Griffith Sr. at his Portage home, police said.

Singletary, 20, of 501 Pennsylvania St., turned himself in to Gary police, who then contacted Portage police, Portage Sgt. Keith Hughes said.

Singletary was en route to the Porter County Sheriff's Department late Wednesday, he said.

He is charged with murder and conspiracy to commit murder.

Not guilty pleas were entered on behalf of Major on Wednesday morning after being charged with murder and conspiracy to commit murder in the Nov. 1 shooting death of Griffith outside his home.

Major, of 5236 Mulberry Ave., appeared before Porter Superior Court Judge Roger Bradford via a teleconferencing system from the jail.

Major has hired Merrillville defense attorney Thomas Vanes, who watched the initial hearing from Bradford's court.

Major sat quietly as the charges against her were read, and she was informed the murder charge carries a prison term of 45 to 65 years. The conspiracy charge carries a sentence of 20 to 50 years behind bars.

A trial was set for May 6, with preliminary hearings March 11 and April 1.

Major is being held without bond.

Police believe Singletary was the person who shot at Griffith during a tow truck call in Gary on the day he was killed.

A witness told investigators Major contacted her a week before the murder and asked if she knew of anyone who could do harm to Griffith, according to police.

Major is listed with the Indiana secretary of state as co-owner of Affordable Towing of Gary, where Griffith worked.

Major was put in touch with Singletary and the witness, who told police she drove Singletary back to Gary after the fatal shooting and later delivered a sealed envelope to him from Major, police said.

Portage police have declined to comment on the motive behind the murder.

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