CROWN POINT — A mother was given more time Monday to consider accepting a plea agreement in a neglect case filed after her youngest sons died in an apartment fire.
Kristen Gober, 34, appeared before Lake Criminal Court Judge Diane Boswell with defense attorney Thomas Mullins, who said he had just received results from Gober's evaluation by the Lake County Community Corrections work-release program and needed more time to discuss the case with her.
A possible plea agreement has been on the table since at least April.
Boswell briefly called Mullins and Lake County Supervisory Deputy Attorney Michelle Jatkiewicz to the bench before setting a July 22 hearing.
Gober is accused of leaving her three young sons unsupervised overnight as she drank vodka with a neighbor. The morning of March 25, 2018, her 6-year-old son and his 4-year-old brother were playing with the stove and caught a blanket on fire in their fourth-floor apartment at the Lakeshore Dunes complex in Gary's Miller section, records state.
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The 6-year-old boy survived, but his siblings Kailani Gober, 2, and Khristopher Gober, 4, died from smoke inhalation.
Boswell told Gober she will face a choice in July: accept the plea deal or ask that her case be set for trial.
Jatkiewicz declined to outline the terms of the plea agreement during Monday's hearing. She said she would put those details on the record at the next hearing if Gober rejects the proposed agreement.