Boyfriend charged in triple murder, arson in Gary

Reginald Carter | Lake County sheriff's office

A man is charged with shooting three people to death last week in northwest Indiana, then burning the crime scene.

Reginald Carter, 31, is charged with three counts of murder and a count of arson, according to the Lake County sheriff’s office.

Carter allegedly killed his girlfriend and her two relatives Oct. 25 at a home in Gary, according to the probable cause affidavit from the Lake County state’s attorney’s office.

The Gary fire department responded that morning to the home in the 3500 block of West 20th Avenue and found it ablaze.

Investigators found shell casings in the home and determined the three victims had been shot before the fire, according to the court document.

The victims were the suspect’s girlfriend Yoasha Carter, 27, her aunt Nefretiri Jones, 54 and Dwane Jones, 33, the document states. The Lake County coroner’s office said their autopsy results were pending.

Neighbors told investigators that they heard a male and female arguing in the house about 9:45 a.m., and a loud boom followed, the document states.

Detectives found one victim upstairs and the two others in separate rooms downstairs, according to the document. They were shot at close range. The coroner’s office did not find soot in their windpipes, which led it to conclude they died before the fire.

After the fire, Reginald Carter allegedly met investigators outside the crime scene and told them he had just dropped off his infant at her mother’s home in Chicago, the document states.

One witness who lent him her minivan noted that it smelled like bleach after the fire, and that he was wearing different clothes from that morning, according to the document. A witness also told investigators that Yoasha Carter told her the boyfriend had twice choked her until she was unconscious, the document states.

On Monday, a Lake County judge ordered Carter held without bail, according to county records.