seal  Purdue News

November 16, 2003

Purdue police arrest 3 in residence hall armed robbery attempt

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - Purdue University police today (Sunday, 11/16) arrested two Gary, Ind., men and a 13-year-old juvenile, also from Gary, after an early-morning armed robbery attempt in a residence hall.

Police responded to a 4:23 a.m. call that several men had broken into a room occupied by two male students in Earhart Hall, an undergraduate co-ed residence hall, said John K. Cox, captain of special services. One of the room occupants told police he woke up and saw several black males, one of them armed with a handgun. The men told him they intended to tie him with duct tape and take items from the room, including a video game. When the victim resisted, his roommate awoke. The intruders fled when the room occupants began shouting for help.

In a parking lot outside the residence hall, police arrested James Richardson III, 20, of 3721 West 24th St., Gary; Jovonee J. Thomas, 19, of 4370 Maryland St., Gary; and a juvenile who also was from Gary.

Richardson was arrested on suspicion of burglary with bodily injury, a Class A felony; residential entry, a Class D felony; maintaining a common nuisance, a Class D felony; battery, a misdemeanor; and possession of marijuana under 30 grams, a misdemeanor. Thomas also was arrested on suspicion of marijuana possession and residential entry, as well as burglary, a Class D felony. The juvenile was arrested on suspicion of burglary and residential entry.

Cox said the battery victim complained of neck pain but declined treatment at the scene.

The two adult suspects were in Tippecanoe County Jail Sunday morning. The juvenile was released into the custody of a parent. Two other men were questioned and released in the case. Investigators recovered a handgun and a partial roll of duct tape.

Cox said police also questioned the four men and the juvenile about a strong-arm robbery that took place in another Purdue residence hall Saturday morning (11/15). In that incident, the victims reported that two black males of college age entered their room and forcibly took a laptop computer. Cox said police have not determined whether the two incidents are related.

Writer: Joseph L. Bennett, (765) 494-2082

Source: John Cox, (765) 494-8221

Purdue News Service: (765) 494-2096;

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