WARSAW — A Syracuse man pleaded guilty Monday, Sept. 20, to charges from a December 2020 incident. In addition, sentences were revoked in two other cases after he violated his terms of probation.
The proceedings took place in Kosciusko County Circuit Court, with Pro Tem Judge James R. Heuer presiding.
Brandon C. Carpenter, 34, 8727 E. Hatchery Road, Syracuse, pleaded guilty to resisting law enforcement and possession of methamphetamine, both level 6 felonies.
According to the affidavit of probable cause, on Dec. 26, 2020, a Kosciusko County Sheriff’s deputy was dispatched to a residence to investigate a report of intimidation with a gun.
Upon arrival, two men at the location told the deputy that Carpenter threatened them, accusing them of taking a camper that was at the property.
Carpenter allegedly told the men they were “hit” and “would have people coming after them.” The men also said Carpenter pulled what appeared to be a handgun from a holster and pointed it at them.
Carpenter then got into his vehicle, a silver 2009 Chevrolet HHR, accelerated in reverse and shouted “You are hit” before heading south on North CR 1000E.
The sheriff’s deputy located the vehicle while it was headed westbound on East Old US 30 near the SR 13 intersection. The deputy found that the vehicle’s plates were fictitious and tried to initiate a traffic stop.
The vehicle pulled into a driveway, backed out and headed east on Old US 30. The sheriff’s deputy, along with other Kosciusko County law enforcement and officers from the Winona Lake and North Webster Police Departments, chased the vehicle for more than six miles. The suspect vehicle drove at speeds approaching 80 mph during the chase while erratically passing other vehicles, traveling in the wrong lane and disregarding stop signs.
The vehicle stopped in North Webster, and Carpenter tried to escape on foot. Officers detained him as he was attempting to get into his ex-girlfriend’s house. She told officers they hadn’t been together for more than a year and he shouldn’t be inside her house.
Officers found that Carpenter was in possession of a marijuana cigarette. Inside the vehicle, they also found three BB guns, hypodermic needles and syringes and a white substance in a wrapper.
The reporting sheriff’s deputy went to the first home to speak with the two men. They said they were afraid Carpenter would hurt them if he came back to the residence and they didn’t want to take responsibility for what was in the camper. They said they could see a silver spoon and illegal drugs inside.
The men provided a photo of what was in the camper to the officer. Another officer took his K9 to the camper, and the dog alerted to the presence of illegal drugs. The officer also could see the drugs from outside the camper and viewed the cellphone photos taken by the two men. Those photos also confirmed there were illegal drugs in the camper.
An officer spoke with Carpenter at the Kosciusko County Jail. Carpenter said he lives in the camper and the items in it belong to him. An officer searched the camper and found methamphetamine, spoons with burn marks and a smoking pipe and scales, both with residue.
Judge Heuer sentenced Carpenter to two years at the Kosciusko County Jail for the charge of resisting law enforcement and two years at KCJ for the possession of methamphetamine charge. The sentences were ordered to be served concurrently but consecutive to the sentences imposed for the probation violations in the other two cases. Carpenter had been ordered to serve two years in each of those cases, with the sentences suspended and ordered to be served through formal probation.
Because Carpenter violated his terms of probation, the probation was revoked and he will now be required to serve the original sentences.
Carpenter was given 313 days of jail time credit in one of those cases and 11 days of jail time credit in the other.