VALPARAISO | Police said a woman who told officers she was attacked by two men in a Walmart parking lot made up her harrowing tale.
According to authorities, Crystal Sledge, 36, of Valparaiso, told Valparaiso police she went to Walmart, 2400 Morthland Drive, about 10:45 p.m. Tuesday and saw two Asian men wearing hooded sweatshirts following her. Sledge said the men were loud, obnoxious and talking in "whatever language they speak."
She said the duo trailed her for about 10 minutes before she lost sight of them.
Later, while loading items from her cart into her car, Sledge said she saw the men get out of the car next to hers. She said one grabbed her pajama shorts and she hit him with her knee forcing him to the ground. The other man, she said, grabbed her arm. She likewise said she delivered an elbow to his chest and he too fell to the ground.
Sledge reportedly said she "freaked out," got into her car and sped off. She described her assailants as two thin Asian men in their early 20s, about 5 feet 11 inches tall.
An officer went to the store and viewed security footage with a manager. When the video showed the woman loading her purchases into her car, placing her cart in the corral and leaving without incident, the officer called Sledge -- who began panting heavily -- and reportedly said she "made the whole thing up."
The officer went to her home in the 500 block of Chicago Street, where Sledge was arrested and taken to Porter County Jail. She faces a false reporting charge, police said.