Darwin’s Books Topic of Guest Speaker on Feb. 24

Indiana State University

We’ve all heard the phrase: “You are what you eat;” however, biology Professor David Wooten has his own spin: “You are what you read.”

Wooten will share insights from the books that Charles Darwin read during his lecture, “Darwin: Books, Beetles, and Blasphemy,” as Indiana State University’s Darwin Day Speaker at 7 p.m. Feb. 24 in the events area of Cunningham Memorial Library.

“For me, to truly understand Darwin and his theory, you need to understand the roots of its formation and this led to me to these various books,” said Wooten, a professor of biology at Washtenaw Community College in Ann Arbor, Mich. “Darwin was not the first person to contemplate a theory of evolution. Individuals from Aristotle to Lamarck postulated on how species can change over time, but Darwin was the one that figured out the mechanism to explain such a process.”

Wooten started collecting antique books at first, mostly biology tomes with beautiful illustrations after graduate school. His first love, as expected, was science and Darwin’s contributions.

“Undoubtedly (‘The Origin of Species’) was his major achievement, but far from his only contribution to science. Darwin wrote seminal works on geology, marine biology, zoology, ecology and numerous works in the field of botany,” Wooten said. “If you take away evolution and ‘Origin of Species,’ Charles Darwin is still one of the greatest and most ingenious scientists in history.”

Darwin made these contributions in the face of much personal sacrifice hence, use of the word “blasphemy” in Wooten’s alliterative lecture title.

“He had witnessed others before him who published works claiming species were mutable and were subsequently, both socially and professionally, ostracized,” Wooten said. “He greatly feared the consequences of his theory for both his family and himself.”

The religious debate continues today in some places. Controversy aside, evolution remains a topic scientists and non-scientists alike are fascinated by more than 150 years later.

“Evolution answers one of the greatest questions of all time: Why is our world so diverse? It addresses who we are and where we come from as humans. These questions strike at the core of how we perceive ourselves and how we fit into the complex dynamic of our planet,” Wooten said.

With advances in genomics and the continued exploration of the mechanisms of gene expression, epigenetics and mutation, science is ever evolving, too.

“In my opinion, it is a fascinating and important time to be a biologist and address these issues,” Wooten said. “Historically, this time period is critical for us and our works/actions will most definitely be critiqued and studied by future generations.”

During his lecture, Wooten says he aims to engage a diverse audience of science-lovers, history-lovers and book-lovers for an inspiring evening.

“I designed this talk to capture the interest of folks interested in evolution, in history and in antique literature. It is not a talk directly about evolution, and it’s not a talk only about Darwin,” Wooten said. “It’s a bibliographic history about the books that inspired an unsuspecting English naturalist to sail the world and come back with an idea that grew into the greatest unifying theory in all of biology. I want attendees to walk away with an appreciation of the journey, the genius, the humility, the tribulation and the ultimate success of Charles Darwin.”

Part of the Darwin Keynote Speaker Series, Darwin Day was founded to celebrate science as an international language, much like music, and is sponsored by Indiana State’s University Honors Program and Center for Community Engagement.

Remaining in Stranded Vehicle Generally Safest Option; Continue to Wear Seat Belts


With difficult travel expected in southern Indiana from Sunday night into Monday, motorists should consider if travel is necessary and prepare accordingly.

If travelers are involved in a crash or slide-off, encounter vehicle trouble, become stuck in the snow or otherwise have to stop during a car trip, it’s important to stay calm and remain in the vehicle. A vehicle is nearly always the best protection stranded motorists have from the wind and snow. Continue wearing seat belts, which can offer protection in the event of a collision after becoming stranded.

Drifting snow can make it difficult for other drivers to see anyone standing on or near roads. Leave traffic direction and other assistance to public safety professionals. “Certainly, if it’s a life-threatening situation, someone may need help,” said John Erickson with IDHS. “In general, however, it’s best to stay with your vehicle.”

Below freezing temperatures and the wind can create a dangerous situation where frostbite can occur in about 30 minutes or less. Stay in the vehicle and run the engine every hour for about 10 minutes to stay warm. Make sure the tailpipe is clear of snow or other blockage before running the engine to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning. Turn the headlights on when running the engine, so the vehicle can be seen.

Only leave a stranded vehicle if there is better shelter nearby that can be reached safely.

Drivers should slow down and move over for stranded motorists as well as emergency vehicles and snow plows.

Winter Storm to Impact Southern Indiana; Residents Urged to Prepare Now  


A winter storm is expected to disrupt travel in southern Indiana this evening into Monday. Public safety agencies, including county emergency management agencies and the Indiana Department of Homeland Security are urging residents to prepare now for heavy snow and cold temperatures.

The National Weather Service predicts 4-8 inches of snow is possible for areas across southern Indiana. The heaviest snow is expected overnight into Monday, and will make commuting in the morning difficult.


Heavy snowfall and windy conditions will make travel hazardous this evening through Monday. Hoosiers should carefully consider if travel is necessary during this time. Use a variety of sources to make an informed decision.

One of those sources is the Indiana County Travel Advisory Map. It’s updated with information from the county emergency management agencies and describes the conditions for a travel warning, watch, advisory and caution.

The map is available online at http://www.in.gov/dhs/traveladvisory/, or on a mobile device by downloading the Indiana Travel Advisory app for iPhone (https://appsto.re/us/QHVw4.i) in the App Store, and Android (https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=gov.in.traveladvisory) in the Google Play Store.

Keep an eye on road conditions and closures across the state using the Indiana Department of Transportation’s TrafficWise service at trafficwise.in.gov.

In addition to these tools, stay aware of changing travel conditions by monitoring the local news, travel, weather and trusted social media sites and apps.

If travel is necessary, let someone know the planned route, expected time of arrival and contact information. Charge cell phones before leaving. Pack essential items such as high protein snacks, water, first aid kit, flashlight, warm blankets, extra prescription medications and important documents or information that might be needed during an emergency.

Have a Plan

Strong winds may cause power outages. Residents should charge cell phones, laptops, and other devices now. Other items that should be gathered ahead of time include:

• Food and water for three days (includes three gallons of water per person, per day)

• Battery operated or hand crank all hazards radio

• Flashlight

• Extra batteries for radio and flashlight

• Extra clothing, warm blankets, sleeping bags for staying warm in your home if you lose power

• Special items (baby formula, insulin, medications)

Families should also take the time to check with neighbors and see if there’s anything they can do for each other before, during or after the storm.

ISP Shares IDHS Message: Strong Winds Create Deceptive and Treacherous Travel Conditions in Northern Indiana


Powerful winds are creating a deceptive travel picture in Northern Indiana. What may look like clear driving can quickly turn treacherous in an open area, especially with recent snow and windy conditions today.

The Indiana Department of Homeland Security (IDHS) is joining the Indiana Department of Transportation and the Indiana State Police to advise Hoosiers to consider avoiding travel through northern Indiana.

Additionally, a winter storm should be monitored by citizens in northern Indiana through Sunday. The National Weather Service predicts 3-7 inches of snow is possible for portions of northern Indiana. Some areas may see higher totals due to lake effect snow.

Strong wind gusts of up to 45 mph through Sunday afternoon may cause white out conditions in some areas. The wind can create deceptive travel conditions for drivers. Some areas may look clear, but strong wind gusts across open fields can reduce visibility to nothing in a matter of seconds. It is better not to travel altogether in order to avoid being caught in whiteout conditions.


Hoosiers should carefully consider if travel is necessary during this time. Use a variety of sources to make an informed decision.

One of those sources is the Indiana County Travel Advisory Map. It’s updated with information from the county emergency management agencies and describes the conditions for a travel warning, watch, advisory and caution.

The map is available online at http://www.in.gov/dhs/traveladvisory/, or on your mobile device by downloading the Indiana Travel Advisory app for iPhone (https://appsto.re/us/QHVw4.i) in the App Store, and Android (https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=gov.in.traveladvisory) in the Google Play Store.

In addition to the Travel Advisory Map, keep an eye on road conditions and closures across the state at trafficwise.in.gov or via the Northwest District’s social media channels:www.Facebook.com/INDOTNorthwest or Twitter @INDOTNorthwest.
If travel is necessary, let someone know your route, expected time of arrival, and how to reach you. Charge your cell phone before leaving. Pack essential items such as high protein snacks, water, first aid kit, flashlight, warm blankets, extra prescription medications and important documents or information you might need during an emergency.

Update: Indiana State Police Investigating Bloomfield Homicide


Bloomfield – Thursday evening, just before 7 pm, Indiana State Police Detectives were called to a residence by the Bloomfield Police Department regarding a stabbing that had just taken place.

According to an Indiana State Police press release, the victim, identified as DJ “Douglas” Lockhart, 22, of Bloomfield was stabbed at 332 South Lewis St. in Bloomfield. Lockhart was pronounced dead at the scene by the Greene County Coroner.

Lockhart’s family has been notified.

The autopsy, which was scheduled for Friday morning at Terre Haute Regional Hospital, confirmed Lockhart died of a stab wound to the heart. The number of wounds is not known at this time.

No arrests have been made and the investigation is ongoing.

Bloomfield Man Arrested for Impersonating an Officer


Bloomfield – An investigation launched by Indiana State Police Detectives resulted in the arrest of Danny R. Deckard, 21, of Bloomfield Wednesday afternoon.

According to an Indiana State Police press release, information gathered indicated Deckard had approached another individual and identified himself as an Undercover Narcotics Officer. Deckard was allegedly requesting information on current Greene County criminal investigations.

Deckard was taken to the Greene County Jail and charged with Impersonating a Police Officer (D Felony) and for Driving While Suspended (Misdemeanor).

Those who impersonate police officers erode the public’s trust in law enforcement and may endanger unsuspecting people, notes the press release. There are tips you can use to protect yourself during a traffic stop or encounter while helping your police officers do their jobs.

Tips for Protecting You from Law Enforcement Impersonators

  • Check to see if the officer is in a marked vehicle that identifies a Law Enforcement Agency
  • Is the officer in uniform? Look for a badge and ask for identification
  • Police Officers carry identification clearly identifying them and their agency
  • If you doubt the identity of someone trying to pull you over, proceed to a well-lit, busy place such as a gas station, fast food restaurant, convenience store, or police station. While doing so, turn on your emergency flashers to notify the officer that you are aware he or she is trying to pull you over and call 911.

Indiana State Police Recover Stolen Vehicle in Vincennes, Two Vincennes Men Arrested

Trevor D. Pritchard

Knox County – Indiana State Police received information yesterday that a stolen 2000 GMC pickup truck was possibly in the Vincennes area. At approximately 6:20 p.m., Trooper Brad Mull spotted the vehicle in a parking lot near the Fast Break Marathon gas station located on 6th Street at Executive Blvd.

The driver was identified as Trevor D. Pritchard, 19, of Vincennes. A passenger was identified as Brandon M. Weber, 27, of Vincennes. During a search of the vehicle troopers found a syringe and drug paraphernalia.

Further investigation revealed the vehicle had been reported stolen approximately two-weeks ago from Ferdinand. Pritchard and Weber were arrested and taken to the Knox County Jail where they are currently being held on bond.

Arrested and Charges:

Trevor D. Pritchard, 19, 1030 South 18th Street, Vincennes, IN
Auto Theft, Level 6 Felony
Possession of a Syringe, Level 6 Felony
Possession of Drug Paraphernalia, Class A Misdemeanor
Brandon M. Weber, 27, 504 East Locust Street, Vincennes, IN
Possession of a Syringe, Level 6 Felony
Possession of Drug Paraphernalia, Class A Misdemeanor

Arresting Officer: Trooper Brad Mull, Indiana State Police

Assisting Agencies: Vincennes Police and Knox County Sheriff’s Office

Brandon M. Weber

Brandon M. Weber

Two Shelburn Men Facing Multiple Meth-Related Charges

Bradley Stuck and Lucas Vilchuck

Lucas M. Vilchuck, 25, and Bradley W. Stuck, 57, both of Shelburn, are charged with possession of methamphetamine, dumping controlled substance waste and maintaining a common nuisance, all level 6 felonies; and possession of paraphernalia, a class A misdemeanor.

Both are also charged with dealing in methamphetamine — a level 4 felony for Vilchuck and level 5 for Stuck.

Indiana State Trooper Shilo R. Raulston reported that on Jan. 20, he got a “precursor log” from a Shelburn business. The log includes names of the people who have purchased items that can be used in making methamphetamine, such as lithium batteries and instant cold packs that contain ammonium nitrate.

Vilchuck was reportedly on the log for several purchases of these, between Jan. 3 and Jan. 9. On Jan. 26, Raulston stated, he searched the national precursor exchange log, and found that Vilchuck had also bought a pseudoephedrine-containing medication on Jan. 22.

After determining Vilchuck’s address, Raulston reportedly found that Stuck lives at the same residence and had also bought pseudoephedrine on Jan. 14 and a cold compress pack on Nov. 25, 2014.

Raulston traveled to the Shelburn home on Jan. 26 and Stuck answered the door. Raulston reported his behavior as erratic, with his mood quickly changing between irritated and cooperative. Raulston stated that he asked Stuck about his and Vilchuck’s pseudoephedrine purchases, and he allegedly claimed he had bought it for his mother.

Stuck also allegedly said that Vilchuck was no longer living there and had gone to rehab. Stuck reportedly continued to have “inconsistencies with his story,” so Raulston called for backup. The dispatcher reportedly said there had been many calls to this residence, so Raulston decided that he and other officers should check to see who was home.

Raulston reported that he saw two cut straws like those sometimes used to ingest methamphetamine and asked Stuck if he could search the residence. He allegedly consented. Items reportedly found in Stuck’s room included two baggies with the corners cut out and a hypodermic syringe.

Raulston spoke to Vilchuck on the phone and Vilchuck allegedly gave him permission to search his room as well, and he found syringes in there.

In other parts of the home and garage, officers reportedly found many other items such as straws containing an off-white powdery substance, a glass marijuana pipe, more syringes and baggies, tubing, a soda bottle containing an off-white granular substance, an empty cold pack box, cut open instant cold pack, two empty nasal decongestant boxes, cut open lithium batteries and more evidence of a one-pot meth lab.

Bond for Vilchuck was set at $48,000 and bond for Stuck was set at $43,000.

Truck Driver Tests Positive for Marijuana and Cocaine

Indiana State Police

Sullivan County – Yesterday afternoon at 1:13, Indiana State Police Commercial Vehicle Enforcement Senior Trooper Byron Goodman stopped a 2015 International box truck on US 41 at Old State 54 for a routine federal motor carrier safety inspection. During the stop, Goodman noticed a smell of what appeared to be marijuana and subsequent search of the vehicle yielded approximately (10) grams of suspected marijuana.

The driver was taken to Sullivan County Community Hospital for a chemical test and tested positive for marijuana and cocaine. The driver was incarcerated in the Sullivan County Jail.

Arrested Driver: Joe A. Carrillo, age 41, of South Bend, Indiana

Charges: Operating a Vehicle While Intoxicated-Endangerment; Operating While Intoxicated with Schedule I or II Controlled Substance; Possession of Marijuana; and Maintaining a Common Nuisance.

Issued traffic citations for license violation and no log book.

The truck was hauling truck parts and operating under Winston, LLC of South Bend, Indiana. The truck was placed out of service and impounded by Peffley and Hinshaw Wrecker Service.

The commercial vehicle inspection revealed the trucking company was not in administrative compliance with rules and regulations and the driver was not properly licensed to drive the vehicle. Citations were issued.

Assisting was Trooper Erik Smith.

Under the Law, criminal charges are merely accusations and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

Disabled Vehicle Check Leads To Heroin Arrests in Clay County

Indiana State Police

Clay County – This morning at 9:30 AM, ISP Trooper Brandon Mullen came upon a disabled vehicle on Interstate 70 westbound near the 29 mile marker. As Mullen approached the vehicle, he found the male driver in the act of using heroin with a syringe. Trooper Mullen then removed the male and a female passenger from the vehicle and summoned assistance along with an ambulance due to the intoxication of the individuals and the severity of the drug.

The male had in his possession a syringe, and spoon with a liquid substance. The female was found to have in her possession nearly 3.0 grams of Heroin in a plastic bag in her undergarments. Both individuals were checked out by emergency medical technicians and released to Trooper Mullen.

All evidence field tested positive for Heroin and will be sent to the Indiana State Lab for certification. Both individuals transported to Clay County Jail for Possession of Heroin and Possession of Paraphernalia.

Arrested: Tyler Jackson, Age 23, of Terre Haute, IN Preliminary Charges: Possession of Heroin; and Possession of Paraphernalia

Arrested: Shauna Sheets, Age 27, of Terre Haute, IN Preliminary Charges: Possession of Heroin; and Possession of Paraphernalia

Assisting:Troopers Michael Wood and Yan Dravigne, and CARE ambulance service.

Under the Law, criminal charges are merely accusations and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.


Putnamville Troopers Respond to Calls for Latest Snow Event

Photo by Daryn Lewellyn

Putnamville – From 5:00 p.m. yesterday until 8:00 a.m. this morning, Putnamville Troopers responded to the following calls for service related to the latest snow event:

  • Property damage crashes 07
  • Personal Injury crashes 04
  • Vehicle slide-offs 04
  • Assist other Agencies 01

Most of the calls for service were along Interstate 70 in Vigo, Clay, and Putnam counties, with secondary calls related to US 41 and SR 54 in Vigo and Sullivan counties.

No life threatening injuries were reported.

Minimal slowdowns and lane restrictions occurred along Interstate 70 at the various crash locations.

As usual, the primary reason for most crashes was motorist’s not respecting the conditions of the roadways.

Indiana State Police Arrest Fort Branch Woman for Embezzling over $600,000

Photo courtesy of Indiana State Police

Gibson County – Indiana State Police arrested a 66-year-old Fort Branch woman today after a criminal investigation revealed she allegedly embezzled over $600,000 from her step-father, who is now deceased.

In December 2013, Indiana State Police Detective Toni Walden launched a criminal investigation after receiving information money was missing from Franklin Douglas’ account. Douglas died in September 2012. Douglas’ step-daughter, Brenda Lee, 66, of Fort Branch, was his Power of Attorney, which gave her full access to his bank accounts. During the investigation, Detective Walden revealed that between January 2009 and September 2012, Lee had allegedly embezzled over $600,000 for her personal use from Douglas’ bank accounts.

After reviewing the criminal investigation, Gibson County Prosecutor’s Office issued a felony arrest warrant for Lee. This afternoon at 2:50, Indiana State Police arrested Lee at her Fort Branch residence without incident. She was taken to the Gibson County Jail where she is currently being held on bond.

Arrested and Charge:

Brenda Lee, 66, 400 East Locust Street, Fort Branch
Theft, Class C Felony
Check Deception, Class A Misdemeanor

Investigating Officer: Detective Toni Walden, Indiana State Police

Arresting Officers: Detective Toni Walden, Indiana State Police

Trooper Matt Jacobs, Indiana State Police

Officer Darrell Parker, Fort Branch Police

Indiana State Police at the Bloomington Post Announce 2014 Trooper of the Year, DUI Award


Bloomington – The Indiana State Police “Trooper of the Year” Award was selected by the Command Staff from the Bloomington Post.

Factors used to determine the “Trooper of the Year” included, but were not limited to, traffic and criminal enforcement, community involvement and specialty assignments such as SCUBA, ERT, Meth Lab Team, Instructor ratings, or other services performed for the department that go beyond normal expectations.

The Trooper who achieved outstanding enforcement efforts in the areas of traffic enforcement, criminal enforcement, public service and who has exemplified the character expected of an Indiana State Trooper was Trooper Richard Klun.

Trooper Klun is a four year veteran with ISP.

DUI Enforcement Trooper

The Indiana State Police Life Award for 2014 is presented to the Trooper who achieved outstanding DUI Enforcement goals by leading their respective District in DUI arrests. The Trooper recognized for making the most DUI arrests in 2014 for the Bloomington District is Trooper Seth Parker.

Trooper Parker has served the Bloomington Post since 2011.

Trp. Richard Klun

Trooper Richard Klun

Trp. Seth Parker

Trooper Seth Parker

Greene County Missing Woman Case Marina Boelter; Detectives Still Asking for Public’s Help

marina boelter

Bloomfield – Indiana State Police Detectives are continuing their investigation into the disappearance of Marina Boelter of Bloomfield who was last seen on New Year’s Eve near the Bloomfield IGA.

Marina had been seen that evening wearing blue jeans with rhinestone designs on the back pockets, a black and purple jacket and Nike tennis shoes, described as white, with a pink swoosh and black trim.

Detectives and Troopers are still following up on leads and information regarding this case. Please call 812- 332-4411 and speak to the Post Commander or contact ISP Bloomington via Facebook (Curt Durnil, Indiana State Police or Twitter @ISPBloomington) with any new information.

Tips can remain anonymous.

nike shoes

Marina’s Nike shoe

Stop Sign Violation Results in Two Arrests

Leigh Ann Lovelace and Michael Neff

Sullivan County — Last night around 10 p.m., Indiana State Police Trooper Brent Robinson stopped a red 1996 Dodge pickup for stop sign violations at the intersections of Terhune and Short streets and Short and Laughlin Streets in Dugger.

During conversations with the male driver and female passenger, Robinson noticed the male was attempting to place a plastic bag between the front seats, and then attempted to pass the bag to the female passenger who appeared nervous and agitated. Further investigation revealed the plastic bag contained approximately four grams of suspected methamphetamine. The driver was taken into custody without incident. The female was noticed to have what appeared to be a plastic bag between her clothing and when asked about it, began yelling at Robinson and failed to comply with his verbal commands. She was taken into custody after a brief struggle with Robinson. She was found to have approximately 130 grams of suspected marijuana on her person and approximately three grams of marijuana in her purse, along with five narcotic painkiller pills, and one-and-a-half depressant tablets.

Items found during traffic stop.

Items found during traffic stop.

Arrested: Michael R. Neff, age 43, Dugger.

Preliminary Charges: Possession of Methamphetamine; Dealing in Methamphetamine;
Maintaining a Common Nuisance; Dealing Marijuana; and Possession
of Marijuana. Held in Sullivan County Jail on $44,000 bond.

Arrested: Leigh Ann Lovelace, age 33, Dugger.

Preliminary Charges: Possession of Methamphetamine; Dealing in Methamphetamine;
Maintaining a Common Nuisance; Dealing Marijuana; Possession
of Marijuana; Possession of Controlled Schedule II Substance; and
Resisting Law Enforcement. Held in Sullivan County Jail on $60,000 bond.

Assisting were ISP Trooper T.J. Henning, Sullivan County Sheriff Clark Cottom and Deputies Sergeant Bill Snead, Josh Cary, and Justin Bell.

Book in photos of Neff and Lovelace, along with items seized attached.

Under the Law, criminal charges are merely accusations and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

Indiana State Police Assist US Marshal’s Service in Apprehension

police light

VIGO COUNTY—This morning around 11:30, the Indiana State Police assisted the US Marshal’s Service in arresting two persons wanted out of the state of Maine and Jasper County Texas. The US Marshal’s Service had developed information which led them to the Terre Haute motel. Officers took the pair into custody without incident and their nine- month- old daughter was released to the custody of the Vigo County Child Protective Services.

Arrested: Robert Mounts, age 48, of Jasper County, Texas
Texas Warrant Charges: Unauthorized use of a vehicle and credit/debit cards; Abuse of the elderly; Criminal Mischief
Maine Warrant Charges: Unlawful sexual contact with a minor

Arrested: Ashley Nicole Lewis, age 29, Jasper County, Texas
Warrant Charges: Unauthorized use of a vehicle and credit/debit cards; Abuse of the elderly; Criminal Mischief

The pair was incarcerated in the Vigo County Jail. No local charges were filed and the duo have no Terre Haute connections. The pair is also allegedly wanted for questioning in other crimes in the Jasper County Texas area.

The arresting officers were Deputy US Marshal Greg Snyder and Indiana State Police Officers Sergeant Chris Wright and Master Troopers Todd Miles and Matt Ames.

No further information is available. If more information is desired, please contact the Jasper County Texas Sheriff’s Office and/or the Portland, Maine Police Department.

Four Hospitalized After SUV Rolls Over

suv roll over

Putnam County – Around noon on Sunday, ISP Trooper Michael Wood was working a vehicle crash in the westbound lanes of Interstate 70 near the 37 mile marker, when he noticed in his rearview mirror, a 2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee leave the roadway and strike an embankment.

The SUV rolled over at least three times before coming to rest on its wheels. Trooper Wood radioed the information to ISP Region III dispatch, then ran to the vehicle to check the well being of the passengers and perform initial first-aid treatment.

Preliminary investigation revealed the SUV was traveling west on I- 70 when the driver lost control on an icy portion of the pavement, left the roadway on the northside, and rolled over at least three times.

The driver, Thomas Rice age 70 and passengers, Debra Rice age 65 (Rear Passenger Side), Kelly Rice (Rear Drivers Side) age 37 and Devin Klein (Front Seat Passenger) age 39, all of Missouri where found alert and complaining of pain.

All passengers were transported to Putnam County Hospital and treated for their injuries ranging from pain to lacerations and abrasions. Debra Rice had the most injuries including head, facial and shoulder injuries. Seatbelts were in use by everyone but Debra Rice. Side impact airbags were also deployed. Jaws of Life were used to remove both passenger doors.

The crash was investigated by ISP Trooper Michael Wood, assisting were Troopers Bill Bradbury and Troy Cobb, Cloverdale Police Officer Charlie Hallem, Cloverdale Fire Department and Putnam County Operation Life EMS.

911 Call from Screaming Female Results in One Arrest


Clay County—Sunday morning at 2:57, Clay County Sheriff’s Office received a cellular 911 call from a screaming female requesting help near Cloverland in western Clay County.

Indiana State Police troopers and Clay County Sheriff’s deputies responded to the area of US 40 and State Road 340. During their approach to the scene, communication was lost with the female caller.

While arriving in the area of US 40 and County Road 675 West, Trooper Kyle Hall noticed a female running toward US 40 and a male walking northbound on CR 675 W toward SR 340.

Trooper Hall was able to safely recover the female while Clay County Sheriff’s deputies took the male into custody.

Further investigation identified the male as 33-year-old John B. Pittman of rural Clay County.

Pittman allegedly called the female, a 36-year-old former girlfriend, and requested she transport him to another location. Once inside the female’s white Chevrolet Impala, Pittman refused to leave his house on SR 340 and refused to let the female leave as well.

Pittman also allegedly physically attacked the female and took her cell phone to prevent her from talking with 911 dispatchers any longer. Pittman appeared intoxicated, tested .22% BAC and was incarcerated in the Clay County Jail.

Trooper Kyle Hall preliminarily charged Pittman with Criminal Confinement, Level 6 Felony, Interfering with the report of a crime, Class A misdemeanor, Battery, Class B Misdemeanor, and Public Intoxication, Class B Misdemeanor.

Assisting were the Clay County Sheriff’s Office and Brazil Police Department.

Fairbanks Man Allegedly Plants Meth Lab at Shelburn Residence

Robert C. Alumbaugh

Robert C. Alumbaugh, 27, of Fairbanks, is facing charges of dumping controlled substance waste, a level 6 felony, and false informing, a class B misdemeanor. The waste in question allegedly included “Coleman camp fuel, and/or lithium metal and/or ammonia nitrate,” and was produced through the manufacture of methamphetamine.

Indiana State Trooper Joseph Robinson was reportedly contacted by Sgt. William Snead of the Sullivan County Sheriff’s Department on the afternoon of Jan. 20, about a possible meth lab at a Shelburn residence. Robinson responded to the address, and stated in a probable cause affidavit that he recognized the home as one he had been to before when investigating a meth manufacturing case.

Robinson reported that he spotted a two-liter plastic bottle in a burn barrel when he was walking toward the door of the home, and that it contained a “liquid and granular substance,” that he knew to be “consistent with a one-pot meth lab.”

He reportedly knocked several times on the door, with no answer, and then went to a new location to watch the home. He also stated that he contacted the Indiana State Police Putnamville methamphetamine task force to come there.

After obtaining a search warrant from Sullivan County Prosecutor John Springer, Robinson allegedly found a number of items that are precursors for making meth, along with residue on a mirror, which tested positive for methamphetamine.

Snead then reportedly arrived at the scene and contacted Alumbaugh, asking him to come to the home. Alumbaugh allegedly admitted to placing the bottle in the barrel in order to get himself out of trouble. Robinson stated that Alumbaugh said the bottle contained the granular substance from inside a coldpack, Coleman fuel and lithium that he had removed from batteries.

According to a probable cause affidavit prepared by Snead, Alumbaugh had texted him at about 2:35 a.m. Jan. 20 to inform him of the meth lab, blaming it on the resident of the Shelburn home. Snead stated that he did not see the messages until the next day.

Snead noted that he felt Alumbaugh had sent him these messages so that Snead would not question him further about the items he had purchased in September 2014 — pseudoephedrine and oxygen tubing.

At that time, Snead had reportedly questioned Alumbaugh, who told him that he was buying the items for another person to make meth.

Alumbaugh stated that he went to the address Alumbaugh sent him on Jan. 20, but had to take care of another incident, so he called Robinson. After he returned, he allegedly called Alumbaugh and got him to meet him.

Snead confirmed that Alumbaugh admitted to placing what appeared to be a one-pot meth lab in the barrel, and allegedly said this was the second time he had done this.

He was arrested and taken to the Sullivan County Jail, where he was later interviewed again. His bond was set at $12,000 with 10 percent allowed.

Updated: State Road 45 in Monroe and Brown Counties to Close Again


Update: 2:11 p.m. 

State Road 45 from the Monroe/Brown County line to just south of Tulip Tree Road in Brown County will be closed for approximately the next hour to allow crews to remove an INDOT truck that crashed there earlier this morning.

The road will be opened as soon as possible.

The Indiana State Police continue to monitor the latest winter weather.  For more information, visit them online.

Update: 10:31 a.m.

SR 45 from New Unionville in Monroe County to Trevlac in Brown County is now open. It had previously been closed due to severe icy conditions and several slide-offs.

The Indiana State Police Situational Awareness page is now available.

Original Post: 8:39 a.m.

Unionville (Monroe County) – A ten mile stretch of State Road 45 is now closed from New Unionville in Monroe County to Trevlac in Brown County. The closure is due to icy road conditions and a crash in the area.

Indiana State Police along with the Brown County Sheriff’s Department are re-routing traffic at this time.

Updates will follow as more information becomes available.


Indiana State Police, Linton PD Respond to Suicidal Subject, Death Investigation


Linton – Officers from the Indiana State Police, Linton Police Department, and the Greene County Sheriff’s Department responded to a call of a suicidal subject last night just after 6 p.m. at 420 “J” Street Southwest in Linton. Upon the officers arrival they encountered James Jarman, 48, on the back porch of the residence with a handgun that he would not relinquish.

As officers began to negotiate with Jarman, a conflict ensued and shots were fired. Jarman was pronounced dead at the scene. Family has been notified.

An autopsy is scheduled for Monday.

No further information will be available until that time.

Indiana State Police, Linton Police Department Seize over 700 Grams of Synthetic Drugs

Robert Ceol

A drug investigation by ISP Trooper Richard Klun and members of the Linton Police Department led the Greene Superior Court to issue a search warrant early Wednesday morning for a residence located at 11th Street Northwest in Linton. Trooper Klun, along with the Linton Police Department, the Jasonville Police Department, the Worthington Police Department and the Greene County Sheriff’s Department, served the warrant, which revealed more information and evidence in the case.

A search of the residence revealed numerous items of drug paraphernalia and more than 700 grams of synthetic drugs or a synthetic drug lookalike substance. Also located in the residence were schedule II pills, multiple digital scales, packaging material, latex gloves, numerous smoking devices, other controlled prescription substances and a significant amount of US currency, which is suspected gains of illegal transactions.

Linton residents Robert Ceol, 31, and Brooke Hamoel, 20, were arrested.

Ceol faces preliminary charges of:

  • Dealing in a synthetic drug
  • Possession of a schedule II controlled substance
  • Possession of a schedule III controlled substance
  • Maintaining a common nuisance
  • Possession of a synthetic drug
  • Possession of paraphernalia

Hamoel faces preliminary charges of:

  • Dealing in a synthetic drug
  • Maintaining a common nuisance
  • Possession of a synthetic drug
  • Possession of paraphernalia

Anyone with any information regarding this case is asked to contact the Indiana State Police at the Bloomington Post at 1-812-332-4411 or 1-800-423-1286. Your information can remain confidential.

Multiple Crashes and Slide Offs Along I-70

The Indiana State Police Putnamville District is currently working multiple crashes and slide-offs on I-70 near the 26 mile marker, both eastbound and westbound, and farther east to the 42 mile marker.

No serious injuries are reported. There has mostly been property damage and very minor injuries.

I-70 is open, but traffic is slow in the area. Please use caution.

Worthington Man Facing Drug Charges

ronald bays

A warrant for Ronald A. Bays, 27, was issued on Wednesday. Bays was taken into custody for alleged possession of marijuana with a prior conviction, a class D felony, and maintaining a common nuisance, a class D felony.

The charges stem from an incident on November 1 of last year, when Linton Police Officer Nick Yingling stopped a car because of possible illegal window tint. Indiana State Police Trooper Richard Klun and Linton K9 Handler Tom Jerrels and his K9 partner, Charlie, were also on scene.

According to a probable cause affidavit, while Yingling conducted the normal business of the traffic stop, Jerrels and Charlie conducted a free air sniff around the vehicle and Charlie alerted to controlled narcotics within the car.

Bays allegedly refused to consent to a search of his vehicle, and Yingling informed Klun that he spontaneously uttered that he had a joint under his driver’s side floor mat. Klun stated that he then handcuffed Bays and asked him if he had any contraband in his vehicle, which he denied. Klun then informed Bays that he was lying and had just told another officer there was a joint in his car.

Klun said in the court document that Bays then indicated that clearly it would be better to just tell the truth, and informed him that there was a bag with marijuana in the center console.

Officers reportedly recovered paraphernalia and 109.2 grams of a green plant-like material that field-tested positive for marijuana.

Klun took Bays to the LPD for a recorded interview, and Bays allegedly admitted to possessing over 30 grams of marijuana with plans to sell about one ounce and keep the rest for himself. Klun said Bays stated that he had just picked up the marijuana that day and was heading home when he was stopped.

Bays’ bond was set at $8,000 with an optional amount of $800 (ten percent) and he was released from the Greene County Jail on Thursday.

Sullivan Man Airlifted After Stabbing–Suspect In Custody

police light

Monday evening at 10:40, the Sullivan County Sheriff’s Office received a 911 call reporting an alleged stabbing at 635 North Broad Street in Sullivan. Indiana State Police and multiple Sullivan County emergency agencies responded to the scene.

Preliminary investigation revealed a small number of acquaintances had gathered at the Broad Street home. During the gathering, and for reasons not yet known to law enforcement, a fight broke out between the homeowner and one of the attendees. As the physical confrontation progressed, the homeowner is believed to have been stabbed multiple times with a pocket-sized knife.

Bruce E. Adams, age 56, was transported to Sullivan County Community Hospital and later airlifted to Methodist Hospital of Indianapolis for treatment of potentially serious to life threatening injuries.

William R. Grimes, age 28, of Merom, Indiana is preliminarily charged with attempted murder and battery with a deadly weapon.  Grimes is being held in the Sullivan County Jail.

Investigators worked into the early morning hours of Tuesday, processing the scene and interviewing various persons. The investigation is still ongoing and more information may be released at a later time.

The lead investigator is ISP Detective Mike Taylor. Assisting were ISP Crime Scene Investigator Sergeant Kris Fitzgerald, Trooper Erik Smith, Sullivan Police and Fire Departments, Sullivan EMS, Sullivan County Sheriff’s Office and the Sullivan County Prosecutor’s Office.