- Associated Press - Sunday, June 8, 2014

KNOX, Ind. (AP) - A northern Indiana man accused of killing his wife, carjacking three vehicles and leading police on a chase through two counties was in critical condition at a suburban Chicago hospital on Sunday, authorities said.

Gary Chavez, 57, of Knox remained at Christ Hospital in Oak Lawn, Illinois, with a self-inflicted gunshot wound, the Starke County Sheriff’s Department told WSBT-TV.

It was not clear whether Chavez has been charged, and sheriff’s department officials could not be reached for comment Sunday evening.

Kimberly Chavez, 50, of Portage, was found dead at his home Friday in Knox, about 40 miles southeast of Gary, the station reported. Investigators have not revealed how she died. An autopsy was scheduled for Monday.

Despite living at separate addresses, Gary and Kimberly Chavez were still married, the sheriff’s department said.

Gary Chavez left his home Friday afternoon and carjacked two vehicles in Starke County, Indiana State Police said. When the second vehicle broke down outside a southern Porter County home, two men leaving the home stopped to offer help, Chavez “implied that he had a weapon” and stole their pickup truck, police said.

The men immediately reported the truck stolen, and police said they began pursuing Chavez near the town of Hebron, about 30 miles west of Knox. The chase involving several law enforcement agencies crossed into Lake County, and the stolen truck ran over stop sticks near Crown Point, flattening two tires on the truck, police said.

State police had closed down an entire Interstate 65 interchange in the area, but they say Chavez drove the wrong way down an exit ramp and tried to make a U-turn on the interstate but the vehicle became stuck in gravel.

As officers approached him, Chavez shot himself, police said. He was taken to a Crown Point hospital and later airlifted to Christ Hospital.

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