HOBART — Officers arrested a violent convicted felon for possession of firearms after he fled from police into Gary, speeding off after an officer pulled him over and got out of his squad car, police said.
A 48-year-old Merrillville resident, who police have not yet identified, was arrested after a Hobart police officer saw a silver-colored Nissan make a sudden lane change with no signal while driving north on Interstate 65 at about 7:40 a.m. Sunday.
The officer activated his emergency lights and siren and the vehicle pulled over near I-65 and the 61st Avenue bridge, police said. As the officer approached the vehicle, he noticed the brake lights were illuminated and the driver was looking at him through his side mirror, Hobart police Capt. James Gonzales said.
The driver then sped off and the officer began to pursue. During the chase, the driver threw two black handguns out the passenger side window, police said. The Hobart officer lost sight of the vehicle near 41st Avenue and Kentucky Street in Gary, but was later flagged down by a Gary police officer who told him the car was parked in front of a house on the 4000 block on Kentucky Street.
Another Gary officer found the suspect in the backyard of a house on the 4000 block of Rhode Island Street and arrested him, police said. The Hobart officer went back to I-65 where he saw the driver toss the firearms and found one of them.
The suspect, who a computer check revealed was a violent convicted felon, was taken to the Hobart City Jail.
Gonzales said charges are pending through the Lake County prosecutor's office.
"The Hobart Police Department is appreciative for the assistance from the Gary Police Department and the Lake County Sheriff's Department," he said.