Local News

Purdue NW

A week after Purdue University Northwest announced that they would be changing diplomas earned by students in May of 20-19, reading Purdue University Northwest from Purdue University, the university has announced that they will seek to delay the changes to the diplomas.


GARY, Ind. (AP) — Gary police are conducting an internal investigation after a video posted online shows officers arresting a man for filming them along a street.

Cmdr. Jack Hamady says the department opened the investigation after learning of the video and receiving calls from around the country.

CROWN POINT, Ind. (AP) — A former northwestern Indiana teacher who was accused of using cocaine in her classroom and pleaded guilty to drug possession apologized at her sentencing and says she now wants to help others.

The Post-Tribune reports 24-year-old Samantha Cox was sentenced Friday to one year of probation and ordered to provide documents showing continued participation in a drug treatment program.

The Indiana Debate Commission, in partnership with Purdue University Northwest, presents the first of two U.S. Senate Debates. Moderating the debate between Senator Joe Donnelly (D), Mike Braun (R), and Lucy Brenton (L), is Anne Ryder.

The debate takes place at PNW's Westville Campus's James B. Dworkin Student Services and Activities Complex, on Monday, October 8th at 6:00 PM. You must have a ticket to attend; if you are not able to attend, the debate is streaming below:

nwitimes.com / White Lodging

Today:   On this Reporters' Roundtable, we talk with Andrew Steele of the "Times of Northwest Indiana" about his story of the White Lodging proposal to redevelop its property at I-65 and U.S. 30 into a "transformative" multi-use plan of hotels, event spaces, restaurants and office space -- among other uses.  Joseph Pete of the "Times" has several business stories he's put out in print and online.  And "Post-Tribune" reporters Meredith Colias-Pete and Carole Carlson join us to talk about their stories on education and community affairs.

Gary International Black Film Festival/Twitter

Today:   We talk with Karen Toering, the founder and organizer for the Gary International Black Film Festival, the three-day event in Gary that focuses on dozens of short-and feature-length films that explore a variety of themes that reflect on the complexity of the black diaspora.  The 8th annual Film Festival gets residents interested in filmmaking and in other activities that support local businesses.  Karen says this year's Opening Night feature to be shown at Indiana University Northwest is "1 Angry Black Man."   Here's the link to the we

Chicago Crusader

Today:  Dr. Vanessa Allen-McCloud with the Urban League of Northwest Indiana joins us to talk about this Friday's Diversity and Inclusion Symposium, to be held on the Valparaiso University campus.  The theme of this year's event is Courageous Conversation "Creating a Safe Space" and keynote speaker is State Senator Eddie Melton. 


HOBART, Ind. (AP) — Police say the shooting of a man and his son outside a northwestern Indiana Walmart is being investigating as gang-related.

Hobart Police Capt. Garrett Ciszewski says the shooting Sunday evening left the 9-year-old boy in critical condition Monday and his father, a 25-year-old Gary man, in stable condition.

He says the father was wounded in a shooting about six weeks ago in nearby Gary.

Today:    A conversation with Val Lay of the St. Jude House in Crown Point, on Domestic Volence Awareness Month and about its 23rd annual candlelight vigil and walk this evening to kick off the special month.  The candlelight vigil will be held at the First United Methodist Church in Crown Point.  Val also talks about a financial empowerment program supported by a national foundation as well as local sponsors like Centier Bank.

Purdue NW

HAMMOND, Ind. (AP) — Some Purdue University Northwest students are angry that the school's diplomas are being changed to specify that they graduated from a Purdue satellite campus.

The Hammond campus' diplomas have historically included a bold header in black and gold letters reading "Purdue University."

But school officials announced Friday that starting in May 2019 the diplomas will read "Purdue University Northwest."

2 arrested in copper wire thefts in Indiana and Illinois

Oct 1, 2018

HAMMOND, Ind. (AP) — Authorities say they've arrested two men in connection with a rash of copper wire thefts in northwestern Indiana and neighboring communities in Illinois.

Police in Hammond, Indiana, say 30-year-old Jossean M. Echevarria of Hammond and 23-year-old Diquan N. Ray of Burnham, Illinois, were spotted early Friday coming out of the Cook County Forest Preserve in Calumet City, Illinois. They were arrested in Hammond with a large amount of copper wire.

The men were jailed and it wasn't known whether they had lawyers yet.


HOBART, Ind. (AP) — Authorities say a person fired shots in a northwestern Indiana store parking lot, injuring two people.

The shooting happened Sunday night outside a Walmart in Hobart near a shopping mall. Some people took shelter inside the store afterward.

Commander Don Foley of the Northwest Indiana Major Crimes Task Force says one person shot at several people. Authorities were investigating the circumstances, but Foley says it's believed to be an "isolated incident." He says surveillance footage shows a person of interest in the shooting.

Indiana Public Media

Today:   On this "Reporters' Roundtable"  we have Dan Carden, the Statehouse reporter for the "Times of Northwest Indiana" with his stories in print and posted online, which include a major decision about the nuisance of stopped freight trains at street crossings in Indiana.  And his colleague Giles Bruce talks about his recent stories, including a story about an addict whose life was saved from an overdose by quick work by the South Shore Line's police chief.

Today:    We begin our series on the Lake County November 6th general election ballot, with the only public school district referendum listed this time.   Lake Ridge New Tech Schools Superintendent Sharon Johnson-Shirley talks about her district's request for support on operating expenses and construction, renovation and improvements.  Lake Ridge is located in unincorporated Calumet Township, outside the city of Gary.

Griffith votes to secede from township

Sep 26, 2018

GRIFFITH, Ind. (AP) — Officials in a northwestern Indiana town say voters have overwhelmingly approved a referendum calling for the community to secede from a Lake County township in a bid to lower the local tax rate.

Griffith town officials say about 97 percent of the roughly 3,300 residents who cast ballots Tuesday voted for the town to secede from Calumet Township. Final vote totals are expected within 10 days.

American Association of University Women (AAUW)

MERRILLVILLE - In spite of the awareness, the Gender Pay gap still exists everywhere and the state of Indiana, and Northwest Indiana specifically, is one of the worst offenders. Kim Churches, CEO of the American Association of University Women (AAUW) in Washington D.C., spoke to Lakeshore Public Radio Reporter/Show Host Sharon Jackson about the problem and some solutions.-

Today:   We talk with Ryan Smiley, the CEO of the Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Northwest Indiana about the start of a major capital enhancement and renovation project for the 100th anniversary of the historic Katherine House in East Chicago's Harbor Neighborhood.  The project already has major financial support and commitments needed, to makeover the building on Deodar Street into a more modern facility that will benefit East Chicago children and their families. 

HAMMOND, Ind. (AP) — Federal prosecutors say a former northwestern Indiana police officer allegedly embezzled more than $180,000 from a local Fraternity Order of Police lodge.

Forty-two-year-old Lawrence W. LaFlower of Valparaiso faces one count of wire fraud. He resigned in May from the Porter County Sheriff's Department, where he had been a lieutenant.

LaFlower allegedly embezzled more than $180,000 over five years for his own personal use while he was treasurer for the Ewalt Jahnz FOP Lodge No. 165.


Today:    Steve Coxhead of the Indiana Passenger Rail Alliance joins us to give an update on how passenger rail service is doing across the Region and the state -- a preview of the organization's short-term strategic plan -- and some concerns about the business model that Amtrak's new president is endorsing.  And Griffith Town Council president Rick Ryfa talks about Tuesday's special election in his community that will determine whether residents want to remain in Calumet Township -- or choose a different township.

Lake County group gets $226K to address food deserts

Sep 24, 2018

MERRILLVILLE, Ind. (AP) — A northwestern Indiana philanthropic foundation has won a more than $226,000 federal grant to address food deserts in Gary and East Chicago, in part by expanding access to locally-grown produce.

The Merrillville-based Legacy Foundation will use the funding from the U.S. Department of Agriculture to add food markets and mobile markets by next summer in the two Lake County cities.

Chicago State gets grant to increase minorities in science

Sep 24, 2018

CHICAGO (AP) — Chicago State University is receiving a $1.3 million federal grant to increase minority participation in science, technology, engineering and math.

U.S. Rep. Bobby Rush said the National Science Foundation is providing the funding to the Louis Stokes Midwest Regional Center of Excellence. The center is a partnership between Chicago State University and Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis.

Portage mayor wants information blocked from federal trial

Sep 24, 2018

HAMMOND, Ind. (AP) — An indicted northwestern Indiana mayor is maintaining that prosecutors used a confidential informant to improperly know they had more time to investigate the case.

Attorneys for Republican Portage Mayor James Snyder argue in federal court filings that prosecutors found out Snyder's previous lawyer wouldn't be ready for a January 2017 trial on corruption charges. Snyder's attorneys argue that action was "tantamount to cheating" and want a judge to limit prosecutors' ability to use information they obtained after that time.

CROWN POINT, Ind. (AP) — An appeals court has upheld a 15-year prison term for a northwest Indiana man who led police on a pursuit that ended with a collision that killed a 13-year-old girl.

The Times reports the Indiana Court of Appeals ruled 33-year-old Donnell Howard Jr. got an appropriate sentence given his "extreme indifference to human life throughout the chase."

Haydn Blackey / Flickr

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — The board of the Indiana Finance Authority unanimously approved a new deal Thursday with the vendor operating the Indiana Toll Road, allowing 35-percent fee increases for large trucks as part of Republican Gov. Eric Holcomb's plan to pump an additional $1 billion into infrastructure projects around the state.

The rate hike takes effect Oct. 5 and the state would receive $400 million that same day from the Indiana Toll Road Concession Co. The rate increase applies to vehicles with three or more axles.

Twitter / Provided

CHICAGO (AP) — A 46-year-old Indiana man has pleaded guilty in Chicago federal court to an alleged scheme that involved his recycling firms reselling hazardous electronic waste.

A statement from prosecutors says Brian Brundage of Dyer pleaded guilty this week to wire fraud and tax evasion.

Alexandra Marshall / American Licorice Company

GARY - Leading up to October’s National Bullying Prevention Month, American Licorice Company is partnering with Team U.S.A Track and Field athlete Norris Frederick and the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Northwest Indiana to spread a message of self-love and inspiration.  

They have embarked on the grassroots community effort to address the alarming suicide rates among youth in Indiana.  

Judge lectures ex-Lake County official who lied to the FBI

Sep 20, 2018

CROWN POINT, Ind. (AP) — A federal judge sternly lectured a former Lake County Sheriff's Department official for dishonesty before sentencing him to two years of probation for lying to the FBI.

U.S. District Court Judge James Moody berated Dan Murchek on Wednesday and told him he'd "be remembered as a crook."

Moody then sentenced the 57-year-old former Lake County deputy chief to two years of probation and fined him $3,500. Murchek had pleaded guilty in May to lying to the FBI for denying that he'd received an illegal $500 campaign donation.

Phased-in NIPSCO gas rate increase takes effect Oct. 1

Sep 20, 2018

MERRILLVILLE, Ind. (AP) — Higher natural gas rates for Northern Indiana Public Service Co. will take effect Oct. 1 and cost the average residential customer about $8 more per month when fully phased in.

NIPSCO said Thursday the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission approved the new rates this this week after the company reached an agreement with the Indiana Office of Utility Consumer Counselor and industrial customers.

Purdue University Northwest

Today:   On this Reporters' Roundtable Thursday, we talk with Kelley Smith with the LaPorte "Herald Argus" and Michigan City "News-Dispatch" about her stories posted online and in the print editions of the newspapers.  They include her story of former FBI director James Comey's remarks as the first speaker of the 2018 Sinai Forum speakers' series at Purdue University Northwest.  Lakeshore Public Radio's Sharon Jackson has a report on an anti-bullying campaign.  And we also have Gerry Dick of "INside Indiana Business" with his guests with a discussion of Hoosier business news topics.