Portage woman faces more jail after failing to show for sentencing

2014-06-13T11:30:00Z 2014-06-13T22:31:25Z Portage woman faces more jail after failing to show for sentencingBob Kasarda bob.kasarda@nwi.com, (219) 548-4345 nwitimes.com

VALPARAISO | A Portage woman will likely face more time behind bars after failing to show up for her sentencing hearing for pleading guilty to a South Haven bar shooting.

Porter Superior Court Judge Bill Alexa told Jeannette Gibbs on Friday he would still accept the proposed plea agreement, but only if a cap of four years behind bars is removed, exposing her to the potential of eight years.

Gibbs pleaded guilty to a felony battery count, in return for prosecutors dropping charges of criminal recklessness and possessing a handgun without a license, Alexa said. She was picked up Wednesday on a warrant after failing to show up for sentencing hearings in April and May.

Defense attorney Larry Rogers asked that the decision be put off for a week to give him time to talk to Gibbs and prepare for sentencing.

A hearing was set for June 20.

Gibbs, 47, pleaded guilty to shooting a man during the early morning hours of Sept. 21, 2012, at the Sportsman's Lounge on U.S. 6.

Witnesses told police Gibbs was upset the man was being friendly with another woman. She pulled out a gun and fired multiple times, striking him in the leg.

Gibbs was shot in the shoulder during a struggle with the man for the gun, police said.

She told the judge Friday she had not fled the area, but was a short distance away from the courthouse, helping her daughter who had just had a baby.

Alexa said he will either accept the modified agreement next Friday or reject the plea. The proposed change is offered, he said, in lieu of filing an escape charge.

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