CROWN POINT — A Lake Criminal Court judge granted a Gary man's motion Friday to dismiss his latest charges because a federal jury already found him not guilty of the underlying allegations.
Jarod D. Johnson, 24, cannot be prosecuted by the state on charges of attempted murder, battery and intimidation filed earlier this year in connection with a 2019 abduction and shooting, Judge Salvador Vasquez said.
"The problem I see here is we're dealing with a moment in time," Vasquez said. "And this moment is no more than two hours."
Lake County Deputy Prosecutor David Rooda said a federal jury never considered whether Johnson was guilty of shooting and wounding a female relative of a witness in an earlier case against him.
A U.S. District Court jury only considered whether Johnson was guilty of kidnapping the woman, he said.
Johnson was acquitted of a federal kidnapping charge in March.
Johnson's attorney, Marc Laterzo, said both cases arose from the same alleged conduct, creating a double jeopardy issue.
Vasquez said he could find no distinguishing factors that would allow for the state's prosecution.
Johnson remained in custody on two other cases.
He's accused of shooting a man in the face and leg and the man's girlfriend, who was five months pregnant, in the abdomen June 13, 2017, in the area of West Fifth Avenue and Madison Street in Gary.
He also was charged this year with felony escape and theft in connection with allegations he failed to recharge and removed a GPS-equipped ankle bracelet he was wearing just before the April 2019 shooting. He had been ordered to wear the ankle bracelet as a condition of bond in the 2017 case.
Johnson's mother, Patricia Carrington, 48, and brother Jaron Johnson, 23, each pleaded guilty to federal kidnapping charges.
They told authorities they worked with Jarod Johnson to abduct a relative of the woman shot in 2017 in an attempt to gain information about the woman's whereabouts April 14, 2019, which was the night before Jarod Johnson was to stand trial in the 2017 shooting.
Vasquez has not yet ruled on Rooda's motion to join Jarod Johnson's 2017 case and 2019 escape case for trial.
Vasquez asked the attorneys to prepare arguments on whether Johnson's involvement in other alleged crimes should be admissible at trial. Johnson's next hearing was set for Aug. 13.