A Morgan Township man charged with the murder of his son, in a 2009 shooting
in his pickup truck, has agreed to plead guilty to a reduced charge, the
Porter County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office said.
On Tuesday, Arthur James Blum, 69, of 152E 50S, pleaded guilty to reckless
homicide, a Class C felony punishable by a term of two to eight years,
Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Cheryl Polarek told the Chesterton Tribune
Polarek characterized the agreement as a “straight plea-and-argue” but she
declined to say what sentence she will recommend at a sentencing hearing
scheduled for July 14 before Porter Circuit Court Judge Mary Harper.
Polarek did say that Blum has no prior criminal history at all, is in poor
health, and has shown great remorse. Her office has also received numerous
letters from the community providing “character references” for Blum,
At 10:22 a.m. Aug. 3, 2009, Blum and his son, Aaron, 32, were found in
Blum’s pickup truck parked on C.R. 575E, north of U.S. Highway 30 in
Washington Township. Aaron was deceased with a gunshot wound to his chest
and Blum himself wounded, similarly shot in the chest, the Porter County
Sheriff’s Police said at the time. A handgun—purchased on Aug. 1 at Blythe’s
Sport Shop—was recovered inside the driver’s side door compartment.
In an interview in March 2010, Blum told investigators that Aaron had come
to live with his parents after being released from jail on an OWI charge but
that “things weren’t progressing very well,” so he took his son for a ride
on Aug. 2 with the idea of talking to him. But things “started getting out
of hand fast” and when Blum pulled to the side of the road “Aaron tossed his
coffee on him” and “the next thing he knew, the gun was out, there was a
struggle, and the gun misfired,” police said.
Blum stated that he was unsure who pulled the trigger, police said.
Blum told investigators that he drove straight to the emergency room but on
his arrival there—around 2 p.m. Aug. 2—he realized that Aaron was “already
gone,” couldn’t face going in, and instead drove around.
Blum continued to drive until stopping in Washington Township, where he shot
himself, police said.