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Early AM Crash on I-94 Sends Two to the Hospital

An early morning crash, this morning, sent two people to local hospitals.
Preliminary investigation by Trooper Lawrence McFarrin revealed that a 2009 Mitsubishi, driven by Alfonso Luna Junior, 26 of Michigan City, was east bound on I-94 near the 27 mile marker (this is one mile east of the Chesterton exit), when Luna began changing lanes from the middle to the left lane. Luna’s Mitsubishi struck the right rear of a 2005 Dodge Caravan, driven by Victor Lopez, 53 of Valparaiso. This caused Luna to lose control and hit the concrete median barrier. The Mitsubishi then ricocheted off the barrier while spinning out of control back into the eastbound travel lanes. Luna’s vehicle then hit a 2006 GMC Denali, driven by James Golden, 27 of Kalamazoo, Michigan, who was in the middle lane.
The Mitsubishi came to a stop partially in the right lane. Due to the collisions, Luna’s lights were not working and the Mitsubishi was struck in the rear by a 2001 Chevrolet, driven by Tina Mulinaro, 49 of Valparaiso.
Luna was taken to Saint Anthony’s Hospital in Michigan City with complaint of back pain. Mulinaro was taken to Porter Regional Hospital in Valparaiso with complaint of body pain and possible broken ribs. Golden complained of pain to his left knee and refused medical treatment. Lopez was not injured.
Alcohol or drugs were not considered a factor.   Luna was cited for Following too Closely and Mulinaro was cited for False/Fictitious Registration.
AM Crash on I94 04-09-13
Luna's vehicle. 
(Photo and article provided by Indiana State Police, Lowell post)
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All Lanes Westbound I-80/94 have been Reopened

An earlier accident that caused a semi to loose its load of sheet metal on westbound on the Borman (I-80/94) ner Cline Avenue has been cleared away.  The three center lanes that were previously closed, have been reopened.  Drivers can still expect heavier volume as they travel westbound on I-80/94.
Traffic-Alert
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Big Backup on Westbound Borman (I-80/94)

A crash has the 3 center lanes of westbound I-80/94 closed near Cline Ave (SR-912).  Traffic is backed up to just before Broadway.  Drivers should expect long delays as you travel westbound on I-80/94 near mile 5.9.   Traffic tipsters are also reporting heavy traffic eastbound n 80/94, due to the gaper's delays.
 
backup WB Borman  04-09-13
The backup on westbound Borman (I-80/94) as seen from the INDOT traffic cam at Broadway.
(photo from INDOT)
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Proposed Land Based Gaming Would Be Statewide

If land based gaming comes to the Hoosier State, it will be done statewide, that according to comments made Monday by Indiana Gaming Commission Executive Director Ernest Yelton. Yelton made the comments during a meeting of the Gary Chamber of Commerce, and stated it is not fair to assume that one of Gary's two licenses would be in jeopardy as a result. According to the Times, Yelton also spoke on Senate Bill 528, saying it appears a new version ends a proposed threat in lost revenue, as the bill originally would have replaced gaming boats' admission tax with a gross receipt tax and given casinos a tax break for free play they offer as promotions.
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Tallian: Budget Last Place to Address Expanding Medicaid

Senate Democrats on Monday offered 18 amendments to House Bill 1001, in areas of education, infrastructure, and health care, as part of the next budget. State Senator Karen Tallian, of Portage, says four recommendations included expanding Medicaid for Indiana, two of which were rejected, and another, that was suggested be part of Senate Bill 551, which at the time was in House, and then later on Monday it was announced that bill would not be heard in the House, making the budget the last place to address the issue.
Tallian says cost of expanding Medicaid for Indiana is fully paid for by the federal government, covers 400-thousand Hoosiers, and would result in 30-thousand jobs projected would be created. Governor Pence is currently seeking federal approval to implement the Healthy Indiana Plan, instead of the Affordable Care Act, but Tallian says several provisions are in direct conflict with it.
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Hammond Hutaree Member Sues Over 2010 Raids

Published reports say a Hammond man, and a member of the Hutaree militia group based out of Michigan, along with another member, are suing three FBI agents and a state trooper, saying their constitutional rights were violated in a 2010 raid on their homes. Thomas Piatek, of Hammond, and a Manchester man reportedly filed the federal lawsuit last month, and are seeking at least 25-thousand dollars in damages for each for the lawsuit's 16 counts. The pair were part of group of Hutaree Militia members accused of plotting to kill law enforcement with guns and bombs, but the case was thrown out of court due to lack of evidence.
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Authorities Seeking Info Regarding Hammond Fugitive

Mitchell Orlando Maurice Photo
(Photo Courtesy of the U.S. Marshals Service)
The U.S. Marshals Service, Great Lakes Fugitive Task Force, is seeking information regarding 34 year old Orlando Maurice Mitchell, who was last known to reside in the 57-hundred block of Erie Street, in Hammond. Mitchell is wanted by the Lake County Sheriff's Department on a felony charge of dealing marijuana, and is wanted by Jacksonville, Florida, authorities for trafficking in stolen property and probation violation. Orlando Maurice Mitchell, this week's “fugitive of the week”, is described as a black male, five-foot-nine-inches tall, with black hair, and brown eyes.
Anyone with information on Mitchell's whereabouts may contact task force investigators by calling toll-free (888) 805-6119 or by texting “capture” to Tip411 (847411). All tipsters will remain anonymous.
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New Trial Date For Man Accused of Killing His Mother

A new trial date has been scheduled for a man who was suppose to go to trial on Monday, accused of killing his 94 year old mother in October of 2010. The Times reports George Knezevic will now go to trial on August 6th, after reported problems with a key witness cause the prosecution to ask for a postponement. According to the article, the 61 year old is alleged to have choked his mother outside of the home they shared, in the 47-hundred block of Buchanan Street, spraying her with a garden house, and dragging her into the house by her hair.
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Another Abandoned House Fire in Hammond

Hammond FD
In Hammond, firefighters were called another abandoned home fire this morning. Chief Jeff Smith says they received the call at three this morning and spent about an hour and a half at the scene, located in the 800 block of State Street, one block from Sunday's abandoned house fire on Sibley Street, which was two blocks from another vacant house fire on April 1st. Chief Smith says this time though there was power at the two-story home. The fire is believed to have originated in an enclosed wooden back porch area, and when crews arrived the back of the home was engulfed in flames. Chief Smith says this is the sixth fire in the last week, and their inspection department is investigating the fire, which at this time is being considered suspicious, and asks anyone in that area to report any unusual activity to report it.
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Six New Troopers Patrolling ISP Lowell District

new lowell post troopers
(Photo Courtesy of the Indiana State Police Lowell Post)
Indiana State Police Lowell Post is welcoming six news troopers to their district. Public Information Officer Ann Wojas says Zach Beaver, Brandon Bohling, Nick Daly, Rogelio Escutia, Eric Kocinski, and Jason Madison graduated from recruit school just before Christmas, and received their patrol cars on Monday. Troopers Daly and Escutia are assigned to work Porter and LaPorte Counties, while Troopers Beaver, Bohling, Kocinski, and Madison have been assigned to southern Lake, Jasper, and Newton Counties.
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