William Michael Hawkins

William Michael Hawkins

CROWN POINT — A Hobart man targeted in a botched attempted robbery that led to his girlfriend's homicide last month will remain in jail as he awaits trial on separate charges.

William Michael Hawkins, 18, had been seeking a bond reduction on charges alleging he was dealing marijuana Jan. 13 when police found about 14 pounds of marijuana and 172 grams of THC vape sticks at his Hobart home.

The Lake County prosecutor's office had asked Lake Criminal Court Judge Diane Boswell to revoke Hawkins' bond in a separate case in which he is alleged to have robbed a former employer and sexually battered a 16-year-old girl Sept. 16 in the 400 block of Henry Street in Gary.

Deputy Lake County Prosecutor Maureen Koonce said Hawkins poses a flight risk because he admitted to a Hobart detective he travels to California to buy marijuana.

Hawkins also referred to himself as a "dead man" because someone in California fronted him 30 pounds of marijuana and police seized more than half of it, Koonce said.

Hawkins has a total of five pending cases, including two in which he's charged with level 2 felonies, she said.

Hawkins' attorney, Sean Mullins, said Hawkins poses no flight risk, because he remained in the area despite an attempt on his life.

The Jan. 10 attempted robbery in Griffith resulted in the death of 18-year-old Alayna Ortiz, of South Haven. Hawkins was free on bond in the Gary robbery at the time.

"He never left, and he never had plans to leave," Mullins said.

Mullins said the victim in the Gary robbery case has contacted him on multiple occasions, asking that the case be dismissed. The man thinks the facts alleged in a probable cause affidavit are inaccurate, Mullins said.

Mullins also said the charges in Hawkins' marijuana dealing case should be level 5 felonies, not level 2. The higher charges were filed because of the presence of THC vape sticks, he said.

Mullins asked that Hawkins be allowed to enter a work release program, where he could receive therapy for drug and alcohol use and find a job.

With little discussion, Boswell granted the prosecution's request to revoke bond in the robbery case and leave a $100,000 bond in the marijuana case unchanged.*

Hawkins' next court hearing is set for March 28.

* Editor's note: This story has been updated to correct the bond amount in Hawkins' drug case.

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Public Safety Reporter

Sarah covers crime, federal courts and breaking news for The Times. She joined the paper in 2004 after graduating from Purdue University Calumet.