Motorcylist offered witness $100 to not call police after crash: police

David Caudill - Original Credit: Post-Tribune

David Caudill - Original Credit: Post-Tribune (Porter County Sheriffs Dept. / HANDOUT)

A Valparaiso area man faces an assortment of charges after the crash of his motorcycle Sunday night injured his passenger and he allegedly offered a witness $100 not to call the police and to give him a ride home before hiding behind trees near the scene.

Deputies with the Porter County Sheriff’s Department were called around 6:40 p.m. Sunday to Indiana 149 and County Road 600 North for a motorcycle crash, according to a report.

Witnesses told police the driver of the motorcycle had fled westbound on foot and was seen hiding behind some trees. Police searching the area found a man matching that description hiding in the trees west of the accident.

David Caudill, 53, of the 600 block of Old Forge Road, told police he’d been walking down the roadway and had seen the accident and reportedly became “extremely verbally abusive” towards officers at the scene.

He later told police he was a passenger on the motorcycle and a woman, 43, of Hebron, was driving. The woman told police she and Caudill had been drinking at a Valparaiso bar and Caudill was driving when they were on the way to Caudill’s residence. When Caudill turned on to County Road 600 North, he lost control of the motorcycle and crashed on the north side of the roadway.

The woman was transported to Porter Regional Hospital for injuries she sustained in the crash.

A witness who was behind the motorcycle told police Caudill was driving and told police Caudill “had offered him a $100 to drive (Caudill) home and asked (the witness) not to call the police.”

Police arrested Caudill on preliminary charges including a felony count of operating while intoxicated causing serious injury and misdemeanor counts of operating while intoxicated endangering a person; leaving the scene of an accident; and operating while intoxicated.

Police transported Caudill to Porter County Jail after taking him to Porter Regional Hospital for a blood draw.

Amy Lavalley is a freelance reporter for the Post-Tribune.

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