CROWN POINT — A man's alleged plot to intimidate a witness in a murder case was revealed through phone calls at the Lake County Jail, according to court records.
Isaac S. Facen, 26, of East Chicago, is charged in Lake Criminal Court with three counts of attempted obstruction of justice on allegations he conspired with Robert S. Currie to intimidate a witness at Currie's bond hearing Tuesday.
John Cantrell, a defense attorney for Currie, said Thursday his client was not attempting to encourage anyone to intimidate witnesses. He pointed out Currie is not charged in the incident.
“It's a public forum,” he said about courtrooms. “Everyone is free to attend.”
Currie, 23, of East Chicago, was charged in September with murder and battery on allegations he fatally shot Ashanti “Bundles” Walden, 25, of Gary, on June 23, 2017, in the 4800 block of Alexander Avenue.
Currie denied shooting Walden in an interview with East Chicago police Sept. 16, but suggested the victim made a lot of enemies because he was rapping about guns, people's deaths and crimes, court records state.
Currie is jailed without bond, but Cantrell filed a petition Oct. 3 requesting a judge grant his client a bond in the case.
Facen was arrested Tuesday as he was entering Magistrate Judge Kathleen Sullivan's courtroom at the Lake County courthouse, records state.
Facen was arrested based on phone calls Currie allegedly made where he urged Facen to show up for the bond hearing to intimidate witnesses, records state.
“I was trying to get a (expletive deleted) to at least show their face, so if a (expletive deleted) do get up there, they will think twice, you hear what I'm saying, think twice and tell the truth,” Currie allegedly told Facen, records state.
The witness did not show up to Tuesday's hearing. A writ of body attachment, similar to a bench warrant, was issued for the witness, who was located Wednesday in East Chicago.
He told a detective he did not show up for the hearing because, “I'm just running bro,” the records state.
He said he believed people from “Villeblock,” a reference to Currie's neighborhood on Melville Avenue, were trying to kill him, records state.
Facen's bond is $50,000. An initial court hearing has not been scheduled.