Porter County crime briefs

2013-07-15T16:56:00Z 2013-07-15T19:23:14Z Porter County crime briefsTimes Staff nwitimes.com
July 15, 2013 4:56 pm  • 

Man sentenced gets 16-year prison term for fatal wreck

VALPARAISO | A LaPorte man was sentenced Monday in for his role in a 2011 fatal crash on Interstate 94 near Chesterton.

Jonathan Sanchez  was sentenced to 20 years in prison, with four years suspended, said defense attorney Peter Boyles. He was charged with operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of a controlled substance causing death.

Sanchez was traveling east on Interstate 94 in a truck he allegedly stole from his girlfriend's grandmother, when he looked struck a minivan stopped for another crash, Indiana State Police said.

A passenger in the minivan, Jaya Patel, 42, of Canton, Mich., was killed.

Sanchez was taken to Franciscan St. Anthony Health hospital in Michigan City, where he was treated for a shoulder injury and tested positive for opiates, court documents state. Police said Sanchez's passenger told officers he believed the man was abusing heroin.


Man, 71, accused of biting girlfriend during argument 

PORTAGE | Five firearms were removed from a home after a domestic dispute reported Saturday night.

Police said dispatchers received a call about 10:30 p.m. in which a man said his girlfriend was pointing a gun at him.

Police said the woman involved accused the man of having another woman in the home, which led to an argument.

The woman told police she threatened to shoot her boyfriend, which prompted him to get his guns. As the argument escalated, the boyfriend bit her in the leg, she said.

Her boyfriend, Pablo Navarro, 71, gave a similar account, but said the woman had a gun in her hand. He tried to wrestle the gun from her hand, and when he couldn't get it away from her he bit her in the leg until she dropped it.

Police arrested Navarro and charged him with domestic battery. Officers took two pistols, two rifles and a shotgun from the home for safekeeping.

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