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CROWN POINT — A judge granted a Gary man's request Thursday to delay his trial on charges alleging his involvement in a shooting last fall outside the Hobart Walmart.

Alex Hughes, 27, who is free on bond, appeared with attorney Russell Brown before Lake Criminal Court Judge Salvador Vasquez.

Hughes is charged with two counts of attempted murder, aggravated battery and two counts of criminal gang activity. He's accused of shooting a Gary man, who allegedly belongs to a rival gang, and the man's 9-year-old son Sept. 30 outside the Walmart off U.S. 30 in Hobart.

During a previous hearing, Brown discussed a possible motion to dismiss on one of the attempted murder counts, because a ballistics analysis showed a bullet recovered from a boy's body was not fired from a gun Hughes claims to have used.

During a hearing Feb. 22 about the ballistics analysis, Vasquez reduced Hughes' bond Feb. 22 from $200,000 surety or $20,000 cash to $100,000 surety or $10,000 cash. Hughes was released on bond March 12.

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Brown said he and Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Michael Toth have discussed a possible plea, but discovery in the case is ongoing. Toth did not object to a trial continuance.

Vasquez canceled Hughes' April 1 trial and set a new trial date of July 22. The judge set a pretrial conference for June 11.

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