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Witness admits planting DNA evidence; child molesting charges dropped

Witness admits planting DNA evidence; child molesting charges dropped

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CROWN POINT — Prosecutors recently dropped child molesting charges against a Merrillville man because a witness admitted she planted DNA evidence from him in the alleged victim's underwear.

Jermaine Jones, 33, had been scheduled to stand trial starting Monday on charges alleging he molested a 4-year-old girl in 2018 in Merrillville.

Lake County Deputy Prosecutor Nadia Wardrip wrote in court filings the state would be unable to prove the case beyond a reasonable doubt.

Coming Sunday, see a day in the life of Michigan City Police Officer Brian Wright.

A witness admitted to planting DNA evidence from Jones in the victim's underwear, and the act was corroborated by another witness in the case, Wardrip wrote.

"Having received this information, the state of Indiana also cannot ethically proceed in the prosecution" of the case, she said.

During an interview with police in 2019, Jones told a detective he's a veteran and suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder, according to court records.

Jones was represented by attorney Matthew LaTulip.

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