1 man killed, another seriously injured in shooting on Indy’s near northwest side


Photo from scene of shooting on June 20, 2019 courtesy of Ryan Liggett

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The man left wounded from the shooting in the 1200 block of West 29th Street has died from his injuries, according to police. He has been identified as 25-year-old Roderick Shanks of Indianapolis.


INDIANAPOLIS, Ind.– IMPD Homicide detectives continue their search for the killer of a young man on the city’s northwest side.

At 2:30 a.m. Thursday, two men were shot in the 1200 block of West 29th Street. Aaron Cooper, 23, was killed and the other victim was wounded.

Approximately two hours later, shots were fired in an unrelated incident two blocks away, leading to a police pursuit and the arrest of an 18-year-old man and the escapes of two other suspects.

These shootings follow two other incidents in which at least five people have been wounded in the last six weeks in a part of Indianapolis that Rev. Charles Harrison and the Indianapolis TenPoint Coalition call home in their citywide campaign to march and stand against violence.

“We have to find out what happened with the double shooting today and homicide,” said Harrison as he surveyed the crime scene just a few blocks from his church, “so that we can prevent any kind of retaliation and bring to justice whoever may have been involved in this so that we can reduce the tension in the neighborhood.”

Last week Harrison and Indiana Attorney General Curtis Hill celebrated 200 straight days with no murders in two of the Coalition’s focus neighborhoods on the other side of Indianapolis.

“There are so many guns out here on the street,” said Harrison. “There’s so many people that have guns and they’re just settling their beefs with these guns and we’re trying to get a hold of this really as a society.”

Joe Hogsett , who is running for re-election as Indianapolis’ self-proclaimed “Public Safety Mayor,” was on hand for the grand opening of Cleo’s Bodega nearby at Flanner House in the 2400 block of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Street, a new investment to bring fresh produce to a community currently in a so-called “food desert” since the closure in 2015 of the Double 8 Foods store.

“It’s very disappointing to have another homicide in our community but the good news is I do believe we’re making a difference and turning a corner in our violence reduction strategies,” said Hogsett, highlighting the anticipated addition of 150 new police officers to IMPD, the emphasis on community-based beat policing and $300,000 in community violence reduction grants that will be awarded next month. “I would tell the people of Indianapolis because of the investments that the City County Council has made, because of the efforts of IMPD and frankly all these community groups…I do think that we’re turning a corner.”

State Senator Jim Merritt, the republican challenging Hogsett for mayor, said he would address food deserts in Indianapolis by encouraging urban gardens, more bodegas and tax increment financing districts for grocery stores willing to locate in challenged neighborhoods.

Merritt also said IMPD officers spend too much time doing paperwork and need to spend more time on patrol.

“They have to be out in the streets. They have to be going to homeowners associations. They have to be embedded in the community and right now paperwork is taking a lot of their time,” said Merritt who wants to emphasize alternative ways residents can report crimes to police. “Instead of calling the Mayor’s Action Center, I’m gonna encourage people to call their pastors and the church and they can call 911. People have some sort of fear of calling 911 and we need to allow them to have any opportunity to talk to the police, talk to law enforcement, and if it takes someone asking a pastor to call for them, we will.”

Last year at this time Indianapolis had recorded 75 homicides and 68 murders.

This year that total is 68 homicides and 58 murders.

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