CROWN POINT — A Merrillville man was dragged by a vehicle, bitten, cut and bruised when a Valparaiso couple robbed him of a handgun he had planned to sell, court records allege.

Kevin A. Jackson, 19, and Desiree C. Staples, 19, each were charged Wednesday in connection with the robbery Sunday outside the Hampton Inn in the 2800 block of Carlson Drive in Hammond.

The 20-year-old Merrillville man told police he recently was convicted of misdemeanor domestic battery and decided to sell a Glock handgun, which he could no longer legally possess.

He advertised the gun for sale on social media, and connected with Jackson through an acquaintance, Lake Criminal Court records say.

The man arranged to meet Jackson at a Walmart, but changed the location to the Hampton Inn because he knew the hotel has surveillance cameras. Video from those cameras corroborated the victim's account of what happened, records say.

The Merrillville man told police he was sitting in his vehicle with Jackson and his friend when Jackson pointed a gun at him, records say.

The two struggled over the gun in the car, and the fight spilled into the parking lot. A man who arrived with Jackson in a blue Chrysler Pacifica began fighting a man who had accompanied the victim, records say.

Jackson and his friend forced the victim into the Pacifica, and Staples began to drive away while the victim's legs dragged on the ground. Staples drove several hundred feet before the Merrillville man broke free, records say.

The Merrillville man had cuts and bruising to his face and elbow and a "significant bite mark on his right shoulder." He also required five stitches to his right thumb, records say.

Hammond police used the city's Blue Net license plate reader system to trace the Pacifica back to the home of Staples' relative in Valparaiso, records say. Police staked out her home and pulled her over as she drove the Pacifica.

Staples admitted to the robbery and told police she grabbed the Glock from the Merrillville man's vehicle as Jackson and his friend struggled with the Merrillville man, records say.

Jackson and Staples were each charged with robbery resulting in serious bodily injury, armed robbery, two counts of kidnapping and theft of a firearm.

Staples was arrested in Porter County. Jackson was wanted on a warrant Thursday, records show.


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.