Two Gary men are set to plead guilty to federal charges in the 2019 attempted robbery and homicide of a pizza delivery driver.
Terryante A. Flournoy, 22, and Ciontay J. Wright, 21, both of Gary, signed plea agreements Wednesday, a week before they had been scheduled to stand trial on murder and attempted robbery charges.
The two men are prepared to admit in open court they called for a pizza delivery to an abandoned house Nov. 24, 2019 in Gary’s Glen Park neighborhood and Flournoy fatally shot the delivery driver, David J. Shelton, 30, of Portage.
They are both pleading guilty to attempted robbery. Flournoy also is pleading guilty to possessing a firearm after having been convicted of a felony.
Flournoy has prior felony convictions for theft and battery.
The U.S. Attorney’s office has agreed to drop the murder charges against the pair in exchange for the defendants changing their plea to guilty.
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They are giving up their rights to a jury trial in return for the U.S. Attorney’s office recommending they receive a more lenient prison sentence.
The plea agreement states U.S. District Court Judge Philip P. Simon may sentence Wright anywhere between 15 and 25 years and Flournoy between 25 and 40 years imprisonment.
No date had been scheduled Wednesday afternoon for their formal change of plea.
The defendants admit they called in a pizza order to Luigi’s and told them to deliver it to the 3700 block of Washington Street.
The two admitted they were waiting outside an abandoned house on the block when Shelton pulled up, Flournoy was armed with a American Tactical Omni Hybrid rifle.
Flournoy said he shot Shelton once as Shelton was reaching into his jacket. The wound was fatal.
An affidavit police filed earlier in Lake Criminal Court states Flournoy later told Wright, "I thought he had a gun" and "this is the life."
The two men said they ran from the scene without obtaining any money.
Investigators with the FBI's Gang Response Investigative Team and the Lake County/Gary Metro Homicide Unit traced a phone call Flournoy made to the pizza business, later, to Flournoy’s family’s home as well as a second call they made to a woman Wright knew.
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