Two arrested after incident with knife


An argument about money involving a man making threats with a meat cleaver at a North Vernon apartment complex led to his arrest along with the arrest of his accomplice, police report.

Joshua R. Collett, 26, of North Vernon faces 10 charges, including a Level 3 felony charge of robbery committed while armed with a deadly weapon, related to the report of a domestic disturbance at 6:57 p.m. Sunday at Oak Meadows Apartments.

Officers responding to the scene were told there was a knife being held to a baby.

Officer Isaac Barkes and Wes Thayer arrived on scene and were told the suspect was attempting to leave the area in a brown Mercury passenger car, police reported.

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Officers saw the vehicle pass them as they were entering the complex parking lot and conducted a traffic stop on the vehicle and detained the two adult occupants, identified as Collett and Kelby R. Leonard, 25, North Vernon.

Two children, ages 1 and 2, also were in the vehicle at the time of the stop.

During the investigation, officers were told Leonard had driven Collett to an address in Oak Meadow Apartments with the two children in the car. Once there, Collett began arguing with a family member about money.

The argument became heated, and Collett allegedly produced a meat cleaver-style knife, demanded money and threatened the people in the apartment, police said.

Police also learned Collett had threatened those present, including a 1-year-old child, to not call police, and Leonard knew what was occurring in the apartment and left the 1- and 2-year-old children unattended in the vehicle to go warn Collett to leave with her before police arrived.

Collett and Leonard both were booked into the Jennings County Jail.

Collett was found to be in possession of drug paraphernalia, a prescription-only drug and methamphetamine. The knife used in the original complaint was located under the front passenger seat of the brown Mercury stopped by the officers.

Collett faces six Level 6 felony charges of intimidation, possession of methamphetamine, neglect of a dependent, criminal recklessness with a deadly weapon, Legend Drug Act violation and visiting/maintaining a common nuisance; two Class A misdemeanor counts of possession of paraphernalia and interfering with reporting a crime; and a Class B misdemeanor charge of disorderly conduct.

He also was arrested on a warrant for failure to appear on charges of criminal confinement, battery with injury and domestic battery.

Leonard faces a Level 3 felony charge of conspiracy to commit robbery with a deadly weapon, aiding, inducing or causing an offense; and Level 6 felony charges of neglect of a dependent and visiting/maintaining a common nuisance.

Leonard is being held on $1,055 cash bond at the Jennings County Jail.

Deputies from the Jennings County Sheriff’s Department assisted the North Vernon Police Department at the scene.

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