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Double Homicide Person of Interest in Custody

Through preliminary reports, autopsies, dental records and DNA the Lake County Coroner's office has postively identified the victims of the double homicide discovered last Friday during a well-fare check in an unincorporated area of Lowell.
At a Monday afternoon press conference, Lake County Sheriff John Bunsich released the names of the victims, 68-year-old Clifford Snow (a retired Hammond school teacher) and his wife, 66 year-old Joyce Snow, whose bodies were found inside their residence located on 197th Avenue near Calumet Avenue. 


SNOW MUGG
(Thomas Jeffrey Snow.  Photo provided by Lake County Sheriff's Department)


Sheriff Bunsich says a person of interest, identified as the deceased couple's son, 34 year-old Thomas Snow was reportedly in the area days prior to the murder.  On Friday night the sheriff's department issued an all points bulletin for Snow and his deceased parents 2008, white Chevrolet HHR.  The sheriff says the suspect, who has a history of drug abuse, auto theft and feeling officers, was wanted by the Newton County Sheriff's department for an alleged armed robbery that took place at Bozeman's Marathon in DeMotte on Thursday, the day before the decomposed bodies were found. Sheriff Bunsich says during a high speed pursuit on State Road 10, Snow was able to loose Newton County police into Will County, Illinois.


clifford Snow
(Clifford Snow.  Photo provided by Lake County Sheriff's Department) 


joyce snow
(Joyce Snow.  Photo provided by Lake County Sheriff's Department)


On Saturday, October 19th the Lake County Sheriff's Department received word that Snow was picked up by police after a pursuit following a traffic stop in Hawley, Minnesota, which located in the northwest part of the state about 15-miles east of Fargo, North Dakota.  Snow was driving  
Sheriff Bunsich says Newton county authorities are in the process of extraditing Snow to Newton County where he faces armed robbery charges.  While no charges are currently pending in connection to the double homicide, Bunsich says the Lake County Sheriff's Department will work with Lake County Prosecutor and file charges once Snow is back in the state.


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(Lake County Coroner, Merrilee Frey with Sheriff John Bunsich at Monday, October 21st press conference at Lake County Sheriff's headquarters.  Photo courtesy of Jay Stevens)


At the end of the press conference to ease the concern of neighbors and residents of rural Lowell, where the homicides took place, Sheriff Bunsich stressed that Snow targeted his family and that it was an isolated incident. ...

 

Alcohol Suspected in I-65 Rollover

drunk semi rollover 1
(Photos Courtesy of Indiana State Police Lowell Post)
A rolled over semi closed all lanes of southbound I-65 near Lowell early this morning for over two-and-a-half hours. Indiana State Police Lowell Post reports 28 year old Devon House, of Florida, was heading south on I-65, two miles north of the Lowell exit, at approximately 12:30am, when his semi went off the roadway, House over-corrected, lost control and the semi rolled over onto the passenger side, hitting an informational sign. Authorities say House was taken to a local hospital where his blood-alcohol level tested point-two-seven. House and his female passenger were not injured in the crash and all southbound lanes of I-65 were reopened around 3am.
drunk semi rollover 2 ...

 

New CEO of Goodwill Michiana Announced

goodwill
After 40 years of service, Goodwill Industries of Michiana's current CEO, J. Larry Neff is retiring. Goodwill's Board Chairman Tony Allison announced today that Neff will retire on December 31st and Debie Coble will serve serve as their next President as CEO, effective November 11th. Coble is currently the company's Vice President of Workforce Development, Public Relations and Development, and Industrial Services. ...
 

Ridge Rd Ramp to I-80/94 Night Closures Thru 10/31

Indot Logo color
Nightly closures of the Ridge Road/37th Avenue ramp to westbound I-80/94 begin tonight. INDOT reports crews will be repaving sections of the ramp, which will be closed each night, Monday through Thursday, from 7pm to 5am, through the end of the month.
Traffic wishing to travel from Ridge Road/37th Avenue to westbound 80/94 will be detoured eastbound on 80/94, to the exit for northbound Ripley Street/SR 51, and back to westbound 80/94....
 

Right Lanes of NB/SB I-65 Closed for Construction

I-65 nb and sb backups
(Photo Courtesy of INDOT Cams)
Construction work on I-65 are causing some delays for motorists this afternoon. Both the right lanes of northbound and southbound I-65 is closed near Ridge Rd due to construction work, so expect delays as you travel northbound and southbound on I-65 in that area. ...
 

Charity Texas Hold 'Em Tournament for LAUW

Charity Texas Hold 'Em Tournament for LAUW

Lake Area United Way and Horseshoe Casino teamed up for a charity Texas Hold 'Em Tournament.  Tournament Chair Aaron McDermott says the idea came about because he wanted to create a unique fundraiser that had not already been done and Horseshoe Casino provided the perfect setting .  McDemott says they look forward to growing the event even more next year.  Lake Area United Way Relationship Manager Shellie Dell says just the proceeds from the first day of the tournament, October 16th, went toward their organization.  Dell says right now they are in the middle of their 2013-14 Employee Giving Campaign and the goal is to get a combination of one-thousand new donors and volunteers.

If you would like more information on how to donate to the Lake Area United Way, visit http://lauw.org/...

 

Police Officer Arrested on Drunk Driving Charge

A 33 year old South Bend police officer from LaPorte who crashed his vehicle Saturday evening has been charged with operating a vehicle while intoxicated. The LaPorte County Sheriff's Office reports an off-duty deputy came across the crash, in the 39-hundred block of North County Road 350 East, and reported the vehicle struck two telephone junction boxes. Authorities report 33 year old Jeff McKee was still behind the wheel of his pickup, which was running, and sitting about halfway off the road, when officers arrived. ...
 

Leaf Pick-Up Season Begins in Valparaiso

leaves
In Valparaiso, the city's fleet of seven leaf vacuum crews will begin picking up leaves today (Mon Oct 21) and continue through November 29. City officials say the trucks follow the trash routes, but because of the unpredictability of the wind and weather, it's difficult to commit to a specific pickup day for each neighborhood each week. Public Works Director Matt Evans says they may add occasional Saturday pickups during the heaviest part of the season. Residents are asked to keep sticks and any other items out of leaf piles. City officials say non-leaf items and debris can damage equipment and lead to downtime for repairs. After November 29th, leaves must be left in biodegradable bags for pickup.  The city also says there will be no additional leaf pick ups in the Spring, so any leftover leaves from the Fall season must be bagged for pick up. [Photo/Laura Waluszko, Radio One Communications]
leaf vac
[Website Photo/City of Valparaiso]
Additional info from the city:
- Crews will begin at 7 am and continue until dark, if necessary
- Leave your leaves in the right-of-way -- off the street -- for pick up.  Leaves cannot be picked up in alleys.
- Leaves should be the only thing in the pile -- no sticks, bricks, boards or other items. Public Works cannot pick up mixed piles with brush and leaves together until separated by the resident.  Public Works does not pick up any debris from contractors, regardless of the time of year.
- Additional items should be placed off the street, near the curb.
- Although it's preferable to leave leaves unbagged and unconvered through Nov. 29, leaves may be placed in biodegradable bags (NO plasitc) or covered with a tarp at the curb to prevent them from blowing.
- Please bag any leaves remaining after the leaf pick-up season ends on Nov. 29.
- For more information about leaf pick up, or other services of Public Works, visit the city's website at www.valpo.us...
 

Problems Plaguing Facebook Users

Region residents having trouble updating their status or posting on Facebook in general this morning are not alone. There are reports of update problems elsewhere in the country with people getting error messages. Posts on another social media juggernaut, Twitter, are relaying the experiences....
 

First Widespread Freeze of the Season Possible

tuelows
The first widespread freeze of the season could hit the Region tonight.  The National Weather Service has issued a Freeze Watch from late tonight through Tuesday morning. Meteorologists say temperatures in the upper 20s to lower 30s could kill crops and other sensitive vegetation. [Image/National Weather Service Chicago]
Here's a link to the Chicago National Weather Service website:  http://www.crh.noaa.gov/lot/...
 

Temporary Busing in Effect for Bridge Replacement

Northern Indiana Commuter Transportation District says South Shore is temporarily busing passengers between South Bend, Hudson Lake and Carroll Avenue Station in Michigan City while NICTD is replacing a bridge east of Michigan City. Busing is expected to continue thru November first.
Northern Indiana Commuter Transportation District website:
www.nictd.com ...
   

Serious Injuries Reported in Crash Near LaCrosse

US Highway 421 south of LaCrosse in rural Dewey Township was closed for an extended length of time for a crash resulting in serious injuries. La Porte County Sheriffs Police say for unknown reasons Friday afternoon a southbound passenger vehicle crossed the center line and struck the axles of a northbound trailer that was being pulled by a semi-tractor. after striking the trailer axles, police say the soundbound vehicle then crashed into a Jeep that was also traveling northbound on US 421. Deputies arrived on scene north of County Road 2300 South shortly before 2 pm.  The driver of the southbound vehicle was airlifted from the scene to a South Bend hospital. A juvenile passenger of that vehicle and the driver of the semi were taken to a Porter Regional Hospital for treatment.  Police say the crash investigation was on-going and results of toxicology tests were pending for the driver of the southbound vehicle.    
La Porte County Sheriff’s Office Deputies were assisted at the scene by members of  the following agencies:  Indiana State Police, Indiana State Police Commercial Vehicle Enforcement Division, Starke County Sheriff’s Department, North Judson Police Department, La Porte and Porter County Emergency Medical Services and the La Crosse Volunteer Fire Department....
   

Region Football Sectional Game Moved

The opening round 4A high school football sectional game this Friday night [Oct 25] between Lowell and Gary West Side has been moved from West Side to East Chicago Central High School, reportedly due to concerns over field conditions, including problems with some lights. A representative from the Indiana High School Athletic Association traveled up to Gary last week.  ...
   

Highland Firefighter Killed in Off-Road Vehicle Crash

Indiana Conservation Officers, Highland and Lake County Police are investigating a fatal off-road vehicle crash in the 29-hundred block of Condit Street early Sunday that killed an off-duty Highland fireman. Officials say 50-year-old Richard Haschke of Highland was pronounced dead at the scene from multiple head injuries. Authorities say there were two passengers, a 31-year-old La Porte man transported to the hospital for a broken arm and a 42-year-old Highland man who was treated and released at the scene. State and local authorities say it appears alcohol may have been a contributing factor. Emergency crews responded shortly before 3:30am where conservation officers say a Polaris Ranger was overturned in the roadway. Highland Police released a statement saying the vehicle involved belong to the Highland Fire Department, but the victim was not authorized to use it and was not responding to any type of incident on behalf of the town of Highland. Conservation officers say safety belts were not being worn by any of the occupants of the Ranger.



...
   

Making Strides Against Breast Cancer Walk

IMG 20131020 123814 427
Residents from all over Northwest Indiana gathered in Valparaiso's Central Park Plaza Sunday to listen to Sherry Grevenstuk of DeMotte share her story of survival. Hanah Tepe, Community Representative for the American Cancer society says in it's 4
th year the Making Strides Walk has nearly doubled in size. Although, it will take a couple of days to get the exact dollar total raised, fund raising did surpass this year's goal of 60-thousand dollars! For more information on how you can make strides against Breast Cancer check out the Region Spotlight Page here on our website....
   

Hammond Man Killed in Crash

fatal crash
A Hammond man died in a crash on the Borman Expressway Saturday night. Indiana State Police say a preliminary investigation shows the driver was eastbound on Interstate 80-94 east of Indianapolis Boulevard, and she and her boyfriend were arguing when he grabbed the steering wheel. Troopers say the woman overcorrected which spun the Toyota Tercel around until it was almost perpendicular to an oncoming charter bus, which struck the car head-on. Police say 21-year-old Joshua Walberg of Hammond was pronounced dead at the scene, and 21-year-old Shawnna Popenhagen of Hammond was taken to an Illinois hospital with what were described as incapacitating injuries. Police say Popenhagen was wearing a seat belt and Walberg was not.  The bus held a total of 39 people (one driver and thirty-eight passengers), including coaches, football players and cheerleaders from the University of Saint Francis out of Fort Wayne, coming home from a game in Joliet, Illinois. No one on the bus was hurt, police say, and they went back to Fort Wayne on a different bus.  [Photo/Indiana State Police]...
   

Shooting Death in Hammond

Police in Hammond are investigating a shooting death that authorities say appears to have been a justifiable homicide. The Lake County Coroners office says 30-year-old Jonathan Butler of Chicago suffered multiple gunshot wounds and was pronounced dead in the four-thousand block of Grover Street shortly after one-o'clock Sunday morning. Hammond Police Chief Brian Miller says it appears the homeowner shot Butler in self-defense during an argument over money, which published reports say police believe is related to a drug debt. Authorities say evidence from the investigation is being presented to the Lake County Prosecutor to determine if any charges will be filed....
   

Hobart Police Investigate Stabbing Death

Police in Hobart are investigating a homicide. The Lake County Coroners office says 19-year-old Jesus Ibarra of East Chicago was pronounced dead just after midnight Sunday at Northlake Methodist Hospital in Gary. Hobart Police say the victim was stabbed late Saturday after a fight outside a gas station in Hobart, and a 17-year-old Hobart has been taken into custody. Charges were reportedly pending....
   

No New Information on Apparent Double Homicide

There was no new information available this morning relating to what authorities believe was a double homicide south of Lowell. At last word, Lake County Sheriffs Police were looking for a person of interest. Friday afternoon authorities went to perform a well-being check on the residents of a home in the 145-hundred block of West 197th Avenue, where they found two bodies described as “badly decomposed”. Additional information was expected to be released later today (Monday Oct 21).  There was also no information released on possible cause of death or the identities of the two persons who were found dead at the house.

...
   

Railroad Crossing Repairs in Michigan City

This reminder for drivers in the Michigan City area, repair work is being performed by CSX Railroad to the Franklin Street crossing. The City announces that the Franklin Street crossing will be closed starting Monday, October 21st, with expectations to reopen the crossing on Saturday, October 26th.  The schedule is approximate and could change due to weather and CSX progress, according to the a release from the Mayor's office.  Detour signs are posted to assist residents and visitors to alternative routes around the affected crossing....
   

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LAURA WALUSZKO
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JAY STEVENS
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