Crown Point man gets 4 years for fatal crash

Crown Point man gets 4 years for fatal crash


MERRILLVILLE — A Crown Point man has been sentenced to four years in prison after pleading guilty to driving drunk in a crash that killed a 62-year-old man.

Michael H. Hatch, 24, was sentenced to four years, which will be partly served in Lake County Jail, followed by 24 months of probation.

The defendant pleaded guilty on a charge of operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated causing death, a level five felony. Four other charges were dropped per a plea agreement.

Hatch was driving a 2014 Dodge Avenger at 1:08 a.m. Aug. 24, 2015, in the area of U.S. 30 and Marshall Street in Merrillville when he crashed into the back of a 2007 Honda driven by Pavle Naumoski, according to court documents.

The impact of the rear-end crash caused Naumoski's vehicle to go off the roadway, hit a culvert and roll over before coming to a stop on the side of U.S. 30.

Naumoski was later pronounced dead at an area hospital.

Detectives later learned through the event data recorder from Hatch's vehicle that he was driving 90 mph about five seconds before the crash, according to the affidavit. About 2.6 seconds before the crash, he was driving at 94 mph and then slowed down to 82 mph just before the crash.

Surveillance video from a nearby business also captured Hatch driving at a high rate of speed, according to court records.

A blood sample taken at Methodist Hospitals Southlake Campus in Merrillville determined Hatch's blood alcohol content was 0.223 after the crash. The legal limit in Indiana is 0.08.

Recent arrests booked into Lake County Jail


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