Update (Feb. 7, 2017)-- Joseph Baker was sentenced to 30 years, which is the maximum allowed under the law. He will serve 14 years in prison and 16 years on probation. Of those 16 years, the first two will be served on either work release or house arrest.
NEW PALESTINE, Ind. (April 18, 2016) – A Greenwood man was arrested after he allegedly ran over a man with his truck following an argument. Joseph Michael Baker, 26, of Greenwood, was charged with murder for the death of Duane Begley, 23.
The incident occurred on April 14 near 500 West and US 52 in New Palestine. According to court documents, several witnesses heard Baker and Begley arguing before Baker allegedly ran over Begley and dragging him 30 feet.
Court documents also state that Begley was Baker's ex-wife's boyfriend. On the day of the incident, Baker saw Begley and his ex-wife in a van together, and he admitted to rear ending the van and getting in a fight with Begley. Baker told police that Begley had a knife and was attempting to cut the tires on his truck. Baker says he drove after Begley in an attempt to scare him, but he accidentally dropped the clutch and ran over him instead.
According to the Marion County Coroner's Office, Begley died from massive blunt force trauma to the head.
“Mr. and Miss Baker had been divorced somewhat recently. Mr. Begley was the new boyfriend of Miss Baker and I think the situation is one that upset Mr. Baker a great deal,” said Hancock County Prosecutor Brent Eaton.
Begley was flown by air ambulance to Methodist Hospital, and he died from his injuries on April 17.
“This was not an accident, this was an intentional act by Mr. Baker he intentionally ran into Mr. Begley and killed him,” said Eaton.
Baker’s next court date is June 8. If convicted, he could face up to 65 years. This is Hancock County’s second murder this year.