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Christopher Godines

Christopher Godines

CROWN POINT — A plea deal fell through Tuesday for a 31-year-old Gary man charged with murder in a shooting at a Miller neighborhood bar.

Christopher M. Godines, 31, was expected to enter an agreement Tuesday that would allow him to plead guilty to voluntary manslaughter, a level 2 felony, in the 2015 shooting of Jonathon Farries outside a Gary bar. Godines would be sentenced to 10 years in prison under the terms of the deal.

Instead, defense attorney Mark Gruenhagen told Judge Clarence Murray communication with his client had broken down and requested to withdraw from the murder case. Gruenhagen entered his appearance only last month after defense attorney Lonnie Randolph withdrew from the case.

Parties talked at the bench before the judge granted Gruenhagen's motion. Godines told the judge he was not certain if his family had the funds to hire a new attorney. The judge scheduled a new hearing for Dec. 18.

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Godines is accused of fatally shooting Farries, 20, of Gary, and wounding Farries' friend during an altercation June 24, 2015, outside Murphy's House of Pain in Gary, according to court records.

Godines was charged in the shooting in March 2017 after another defendant accused of assisting in the bar shooting agreed to cooperate with the state's prosecution. The witness identified Godines as Farries' killer, records state.

Godines is charged with murder and two counts of attempted murder.

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Lake County Courts and Social Justice Reporter

Steve covers Lake County courts and social justice issues for The Times. The UW-Milwaukee graduate joined The Times in 2016 after reporting on criminal justice in New Mexico and Wisconsin.