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Three Suspects Held After NW Indiana Father Fatally Shot During Car Burglary

CHICAGO (CBS) -- Authorities in Northwest Indiana have three suspects in custody after a Portage man was fatally shot early Friday trying to stop suspects from breaking into vehicles parked in his driveway.

Alexius Tapia, 36, confronted the men in the 6000 block of Mill Run Avenue in Portage and wrestled one of them to the ground. Family members say the suspect pulled a gun and shot him, with Tapia's two young sons watching.

Alexius Tapia Murder Victim
Alexius Tapia (courtesy: family)

"They devastated a familt. They took a part of us away. He was my baby brother," the victim's sister, Lupita Cruz, tells CBS 2.

Police say Tapia pulled a gun of his own and fired back at 18-year-old Thomas Reichler, hitting him once in each arm.

Tapia died from an apparent gunshot wound to the chest.

Reichler was treated at a Michigan City hospital. Also taken into custody as suspects were Korey Izynski and Nathaniel Sipe, the Porter County, Ind. Sheriff's Department said.

Police said several cars were apparently burglarized overnight in the subdivision.

Porter County Murder Suspects
Thomas Reichler, left; Korey Izynski, center; Nathaniel Sipe (courtesy: Porter County, Ind. Sheriff's Department)
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