Incident DetailsCause of Death:
Patrolman Edward Blakely was shot and killed while investigating a disabled vehicle whom he was unaware its driver was a murder suspect.
The man had shot and wounded another man outside a Gary tavern and stole his car. When the car broke down he killed a 30-year-old man at his East Gary residence and stole his car, which had a shotgun in the trunk.
After Patrolman Blakely was called to investigate a vehicle stuck in a ditch, he was later found shot to death beside that stolen vehicle.
The 20-year-old male, who was on parole for second-degree burglary, was captured in Gary a few hours later after crashing Patrolman Blakely's patrol car that he had stolen.
He was charged with first-degree murder but was found not competent to stand trial in a change of venue to LaPorte County and committed to the Dr. Norman M. Beatty Memorial Hospital in Westville, a state psychiatric hospital that also served the criminally insane.
Upon being found competent to stand trial in 1968, he was found guilty in a bench trial and sentenced to death. Upon appeal, the Indiana Supreme Court ordered a new trial.
In 1972, he was again charged with first-degree murder in a change of venue to Jasper County and found guilty of second-degree murder in a bench trial. He was sentenced to life in prison and discharged in 1999.
Patrolman Blakely, from Chesterton, had previously served with the Chesterton Police Department for two years and the Porter Police Department for one year. He was survived by his wife, daughter, four grandchildren, three brothers, sister and parents. One of his brothers had served as the Porter town marshal.