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Laporte County

By Don Wagner | WSBT-TV | September 6, 2012
LAPORTE COUNTY - $120,000 worth of marijuana has been found in a farm field in LaPorte County, and police are trying to find out who planted it. Detectives from the LaPorte County Metro Operations Unit and Indiana State Police Marijuana Eradication Team dug up 40 large pot plants that had been transplanted in a cornfield on Small Road, just east of C.R. 500 West, west of the city of La Porte. Police were planning to destroy the weed. Authorities say the marijuana find was the result of tips from the public and surveillance of the area.
WSBT-TV Report | May 31, 2013
LAPORTE COUNTY - An official with a LaPorte County animal shelter has been charged with stealing more than $100,000 from the organization. LaPorte County prosecutors have filed felony forgery and theft charges against 41-year-old Jennifer Westphal of Michigan City over the money missing from the Michiana Humane Society. Westphal has been director of shelter operations for the Michigan City-based group that cares for about 1,500 animals a year. Michigan City police say an audit alerted the group about the fraud in April, and officers are still investigating how much money is missing.
By STAN COOK | WSBT-TV Correspondent | February 16, 2012
A call to 911 from another driver and police searching for the possibly intoxicated and wrong-way driver couldn't save a LaPorte County man from driving head-on into a semi on U.S. 421 early Thursday morning. Jeffrey Koza, 41, was driving north in the southbound lane of U.S. 421 just before 3 a.m. when he drove into the semi in front of Purdue University North Central's campus, according to LaPorte County Police Major George Ritter. Koza's blood alcohol level measured 0.226 percent, well above the 0.08 percent legal limit for driving, police said.
By Jason Overholt ( | April 29, 2013
KINGSFORD HEIGHTS - A 20-year-old Hamlet, Indiana woman was killed this morning in a crash near Kingsford Heights. The LaPorte County coroner says her blood alcohol content - .283 - and the dense fog are equally to blame. The single-vehicle crash happened around 1:12 a.m. Central Time at the intersection of Range Road and 800 South, just north of Kingsford Heights. LaPorte County Coroner John Sullivan said Amanda Lovins' Ford Explorer left the roadway and crashed into a cement drainage culvert.
By Stan Maddux | WSBT-TV Correspondent | December 28, 2012
MICHIGAN CITY -- Buster the dog is back in good spirits after coming about as close at it gets to death after plunging through thin ice in LaPorte County. The golden retriever basset hound mix was submerged except for his nose Wednesday night when Coolspring Township firefighters plucked him out of the frigid water. Barbara Tanner, who lives two doors away from Buster, said the sound of the dog slipping away in the frozen lake was heartbreaking. "I could hear him gasping for breath and yelping," she said  About 11 p.m., emergency responders were called to Weatherstone Village, a manufactured home community along U.S. 20 just west of Michigan City's corporate boundaries.
WSBT-TV Report | August 15, 2012
A road worker was struck by a semi Wednesday while taking measurements on an Indiana Toll Road ramp about a mile west of the Michigan City exit. The worker, Chad Fleager, 34, of Lowell, Ind., was airlifted to Memorial Hospital in South Bend, where he died late Wednesday afternoon.  A preliminary investigation by Indiana State Police revealed James Payton, 60, of Calumet City, Ill., was westbound, driving a semi pulling a box trailer. Payton was driving in the right lane.
(>) | October 11, 2011
SOUTH BEND - A former LaPorte County sheriff's deputy is out of jail, but will go to trial for federal child porn and evidence tampering charges.  David J. Oldham, 42, appeared before a judge in federal court Tuesday afternoon. He was indicted and arrested last week after a federal investigation.  At Tuesday's arraignment, Oldham pleaded not guilty to the federal charges.  The judge also allowed him to be released from jail, but Oldham must stay in Northern Indiana, he cannot have any guns, he must undergo mental health treatment counseling, and he is not allowed to use a computer.
WSBT-TV Report | September 5, 2011
The National Weather Service issued a “ Rip Current Alert ” through 8 a.m. Wednesday for LaPorte County in Indiana and Berrien County in Michigan. “People should stay out of the water,” as noted in the National Weather Service's rip current alert statement. Dangerous pounding surf and life-threatening rip currents are expected at the beaches, according to the weather service. Waves will top out between 10-feet and 12-feet on Monday and then slowly subside into Wednesday.
WSBT-TV Report | July 19, 2012
LAPORTE COUNTY - A two-car crash in LaPorte County has left at least one person dead and badly hurt several others. The accident happened around 7:30 Thursday morning CST on Joliet Rd. between Wozniak and Holmesville Roads, west of the La Porte Municipal Airport. Chief of Detectives Captain John Boyd says at least one adult was killed and several others were in “very critical condition. Boyd couldn't say how many but says children were involved. A medivac helicopter was initially called to the scene but could not make it due to storms in the area at the time.
WSBT-TV Report | March 6, 2010
With speeds in the 90 miles per hour range, police pursued a driver early Saturday morning for about 20 miles on the Indiana Toll Road. The driver was arrested just before entering LaPorte County, police said. Preliminary information indicated an Indiana State Police officer tried to stop a westbound driver suspected of drunk driving on the Toll Road. The pick-up driver instead sped up and a pursuit began in eastern St. Joseph County. Two St. Joseph County Police officers also joined the pursuit.
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