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threats lead to attempted murder conviction

Wednesday, April 10, 2019 14:07 PM
Written by Stan Maddux
Category: Local News


He threatened to kill his ex-wife then showed up near her workplace with a loaded handgun.

He was arrested before he could act on his words.

Dylan Hatfield, 31, of Michigan City is facing anywhere from a 20 to 40-year sentence for level 1 felony attempted murder.

He was convicted April 3 by a LaPorte Superior Court 1 jury.

LaPorte County deputy prosecutor Mark Roule said Hatfield and the woman had recently divorced when he left his job in October and drove 10 miles close to where she worked at Auto Zone in Michigan City.

Hatfield while on his way told his friend and mother in separate phone calls he was going there to kill her and himself, Roule said.

Roule said Hatfield was still in the vehicle parked across U.S 421 from her workplace when arrested.

The loaded gun he had was cocked, he said.

''When they approached him and got him out of the car he acknowledged he was thinking about killing himself and her as he sat there with the gun,'' Roule said.

Josh Woodrick, who was told by Hatfield of his plans, said he does not believe his longtime friend and co-worker was going to carry out the murder-suicide threat.

He also said a 20-year or more sentence is not fair for someone he believes was crying out for help.

''Nothing happened. I don't think the punishment fits the crime,'' said Woodrick.

There were no gunshots or any confrontation but Hatfield showed intent and took a substantial step to carry out his intentions which defines attempted murder under state law, Roule said.

Roule also said Hatfield told another friend in a text message that he didn't want to go inside her workplace to avoid the possibility of an innocent person getting hurt or killed.

On Monday, Judge Michael Bergerson ordered a comprehensive psychiatric evaluation of Hatfield for the purpose of exploring a sentence other than imprisonment.

A sentencing hearing is scheduled May 9.

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