IMPD: Gun violence at ‘unacceptable’ levels in Indianapolis
INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. — Law enforcement is doubling down on patrols after a violent weekend in Indianapolis. Six people were shot within a two-hour period Saturday morning, spreading IMPD’s resources across three separate scenes.
Chief of Police Bryan Roach held a press conference Saturday afternoon to address the uptick in violent crimes and to assure people that safety is a top priority.
“We want to send a message that we won’t tolerate people that think that illegally possessing a gun or using guns is the answer,” said Chief Roach.
Roach announced a three-part plan his department would implement, “effective immediately.”
First, he called for the reallocation of resources to the parts of the city that have been hardest hit by violent crime.
Second, Roach said commanders of each district have been authorized to move staffing to the times of day and neighborhoods that need the strongest police presence.
And third, the chief of police ordered a new initiative within IMPD’s investigations and the area’s homeland security team to collaborate through police units to target not just the people being arrested but their known criminal associates.
“The level of violence and the use of violence to resolve conflicts in Indianapolis is unacceptable,” said IMPD Deputy Chief Chad Kneck, “we’ve started deploying those resources and given them very specific missions and that is to go out, and very bluntly, be the police.”
Kneck said IMPD will be conducting more foot, horse and bike patrols to create a much larger and much more visible police presence throughout the city. They’ve teamed up with the Marion County Sheriff’s Office, which announced Saturday it would offer 30 of its deputies to be used by IMPD at its discretion.
IMPD said it plans to better utilize social media and cameras to monitor situations before they escalate into violence. That includes a better line of communication between some of the bar and restaurant owners to flag potential conflicts before they spill out onto the streets.
Over the past several months, IMPD and the Marion County Sheriff’s Office have made a concerted effort to bolster uniformed officers in the immediate downtown area. Their focus has been on the weekend nights, particularly around bars and clubs, where police are seeing the fights and shootings start.
“If business is going well and downtown is safe, they are much more profitable. If it’s not safe and business starts to go down, they own a piece of that responsibility to make it safe because they want to have their businesses thriving as well,” Kneck added.