INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – Indianapolis Metropolitan police are investigating a shooting on the east side that left a man dead.
Officers were called to Sherman Drive and English Avenue just after 3 a.m. Wednesday in response to a report of shots fired. When officers arrived, they found a person had been shot. The man was taken to an area hospital in critical condition, police said. He later died from his wounds.
The coroner identified him as Kenneth Keeylen, 26.
According to a witness who did not want to be identified, Keeylen was inside Bar 52 until closing time at 3 a.m. When Keeylen walked outside the bar, two cars pulled up and at least one person got out and shot him. The witness said Keeylen ran from the Bar 52 parking lot, across the parking lot of the Dairy Queen next door, and collapsed in the yard of a home next to the Dairy Queen.
“That sent cold chills through me,” said Dairy Queen owner, Michael Spears. “I thought that’s terrible, that could have been anybody.”
Spears did not witness the fatal shooting, but says he was shocked to hear of Keeylen’s death.
“That young man, I didn’t personally know, but he used to wait on me at Kroger down at Twin Aire,” Spears said. “He’s a very nice young man.”
The homicide comes one year after another fatal shooting outside Bar 52. On August 25, 2018, 31-year old David Ballinger was shot and killed in the bar’s parking lot after a fight inside the bar spilled outside. 40-year-old Derek Whitt was arrested and charged with murder a few days later. Whitt’s murder trial is set to being next month, according to online court records.
Spears says Bar 52 management has made several security upgrades since the 2018 shooting.
“They have stepped up security around here with lights at night, police officer on the weekends and extra security,” Spears said. “They’re doing their best to try to deter people from coming in and starting trouble, but sometimes that’s hard to do.”
A source familiar with the case said Bar 52 has 36 security cameras around the exterior and interior of the building. IMPD says homicide detectives were looking through security video for evidence that could lead them to those involved in the killing. They’re also taking statements from witnesses to the shooting.
“It can be time consuming,” said IMPD Sgt. Grace Sibley. “But they work very hard to piece together the incident in a timely manner so we can get justice for the victim.”
Sibley also said there could be more witnesses that detectives haven’t spoken with yet. She urged anyone who saw, heard or knows anything about the crime to contact Indianapolis Metropolitan Police. Tips can also be called in to Crime Stoppers at (317) 262-TIPS (8477).