Hendricks County to refile charges in Carmel bus assault

Robert Turner, attorney

Chris Profffitt/Eyewitness News

Hamilton County - Hamilton County prosecutors dropped battery charges against two former Carmel High School basketball players, but the same charges could soon be passed to another court in Hendricks County. The attorney for the alleged victim is asking for a thorough investigation and felony charges in the case.

Nearly everyone agrees that battery charges against former Carmel basketball players Brandon Hoge and Robert Kitzinger should be moved from Hamilton County to Hendricks County, where there was an alleged assault on a younger team member on a team bus. Even the victim's attorney, who's been an outspoken critic of the investigation and subsequent misdemeanor charges, agrees with the move.

"It was my opinion that charges associated with what happened in Hendricks County should have been determined and tried in Hendricks County," said Robert Turner.

And on Thursday, they were. The Hamilton County prosecutor filed to dismiss the two battery charges against Hoge and Kitzinger so that they can be refiled in Hendricks County.

The Hendricks County prosecutor's office said that as of Friday afternoon they were still working on charges and were uncertain whether they'd be filed before the weekend. There's also a call on prosecutors to investigate the case further.

Turner charges that Hamilton County improperly investigated the case resulting in misdemeanor charges.

"I think there's an appropriate charge for sexual battery, a felony. I think also criminal deviate conduct," said Turner.

IU Professor Fran Watson says that the Hendricks County prosecutor's hands are not tied by what's happened in Hamilton County.

"If she's got facts that support felony elements, she can bring felony charges," said Watson.

Now the Hendricks County prosecutor must decide whether criminal charges moved to her county in a high-profile case will be either enhanced or remain the same.