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Defense questions credibility of key witness in 2018 murder, attempted murder case

Defense questions credibility of key witness in 2018 murder, attempted murder case

Donjulian L. Hobson

Donjulian L. Hobson

CROWN POINT — A woman broke down Tuesday as she testified a man she'd known since eighth grade shot her boyfriend to death as she knelt in a Gary alley in 2018 and repeatedly struck her in the head and shot her.

On cross-examination by defendant Donjulian Hobson's attorney, Robert Varga, the woman admitted that wasn't the story she initially told detectives who visited her at a Chicago hospital.

The woman also admitted she lied several times under oath about her boyfriend, 23-year-old Antonio Adams, having a gun.

Ride along with LaPorte Police Specialist Justin Dyer as he patrols the streets of LaPorte.

Hobson, 24, is standing trial this week on charges of murder, attempted murder and unlawful possession of a firearm by a serious violent felon.

He's accused of fatally shooting Adams twice in the head and Adams' then-21-year-old girlfriend once in the head July 14, 2018, in an alley behind the 700 block of Georgia Street in Gary. The woman survived and flagged down a motorist, who called for help.

Hobson claims he shot Adams and the woman in self-defense, after a struggle over a gun Adams obtained earlier in the day from an 11-year-old boy in the neighborhood.

Adams' girlfriend, who was several months pregnant when she was shot, testified she first saw a firearm the night of Adams' homicide when Adams handed a black "police" gun to Hobson.

She previously testified in 2019 she never saw Adams pass a gun to Hobson and that the first time she saw it was when Hobson used it to shoot her and Adams.

Hobson had arrived about 7 or 8 p.m. at the apartment she shared with Adams at Oak Knoll Apartments in the 4300 block of 23rd Avenue, she said.

After Varga played a recording of her talking to detectives at a Chicago hospital, the woman said she did not recall telling investigators Adams had the gun or that Hobson took the gun from Adams after a struggle and shot Adams.

When Lake County Deputy Prosecutor Veronica Gonzalez asked the woman if she repeatedly confused Adams' and Hobson's names during her interview at the Chicago hospital, she said she did.

She did not know she'd been shot until she was told by medical staff at the University of Chicago Medical Center, and she was confused, she said.

When asked about lies she previously told under oath about Adams having a gun, she said she was scared.

After she survived the shooting, she gave birth to a son and he needed a place to live, she said. Guns aren't allowed at Oak Knoll, and she worried if she admitted she had allowed a gun in her apartment she might lose her home.

"I'm going to be forever scared," she said. "I've never had to sit across from someone who shot me. Have you?"

Varga asked if being scared gave her license to lie, and she said, "No, it doesn't."

The woman testified Hobson, who is her cousin by marriage, smoked marijuana with her and Adams after arriving at their apartment.

She noticed Adams was putting on his shoes to leave, and she insisted on going with him because she and Adams were inseparable, she testified.

The three of them got into a dark-colored sedan driven by Hobson, who stopped at one location, got out, left the car running and returned a short time later, she said.

Hobson then drove to another location, where he turned off the car and got out, she said.

She and Adams also got out and followed Hobson as he walked down a trail or alley. She was holding Adams' hand when Hobson stopped, turned around and pointed a gun at Adams, she said.

The woman testified she put her hands up and told Hobson not to do anything "stupid," because she was pregnant.

"I get down on my knees. I hear a gunshot. I could see Antonio fall," she said, as she fought back sobs. 

She heard another gunshot and saw Hobson walk up to her, she said. She felt a blow to her head and felt pain in her face, she testified.

She said she heard someone running away and must have blacked out. When she awoke, she crawled to Adams, realized he was lifeless, gave him a kiss and ran, she said.

Hobson's trial was expected to continue Wednesday.


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  • Updated

Lake Criminal Court jurors deliberated more than six hours before finding Donjulian Hobson, 24, of Gary not guilty of murder, but guilty of attempted murder.

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