INDIANAPOLIS — The group Ceasefire Indy asks people to stop the violence for the next three days. They want to end the year without any more deadly events.
It kicked off at midnight with a prayer at Monument Circle.
Unlike their previous ceasefire weekends, they aren’t hosting big events because of the rise of COVID. But they are asking people to have personal accountability and host their own smaller events.
“Although we aren’t hosting any events, in particular, we’re putting this on the people, on the residents of the community, the residents of Indianapolis, holding them accountable,” said Ceasefire Indy President Della Brown.
In the past, they’ve hosted similar ceasefire events for Halloween weekend and around Thanksgiving.
“We still have to continue on pushing amongst everybody in the community and not just us or other leaders out here. We need everyone to take a stand here as we end the year,” said founder Ron Gee.
“We have to make that decision personally. In all communities. East, north, west and south, we have to make that conscious decision not to be violent.”
They want people to know that this is a group effort.
“We all have a part, too. So, it’s not just me and him, it’s not just police officers, it’s everyone, every resident who lives in Indianapolis. We all have a part,” said Brown.
“Hold your own events, you can have events at home with your families. You can stay home. COVID is going up so we just still want to make sure that we are putting it out there that this is still the ceasefire weekend, and we still want to continue to push that message regardless of if we’re hosting events or not.”
It’s a record-breaking year for murders in the Circle City. As of right now, Indy has around 270 homicides for the year. Leaders of Ceasefire Indy don’t want that number to go up and they don’t want to break that record for next year.
“We don’t want stray bullets going into people’s houses. We don’t want stray bullets going into people’s cars. We want everyone to be safe,” Gee said.
They say everyone can also be alert and attentive to help prevent any violence. They are also asking businesses to make sure they have working surveillance cameras and police to be on patrol in high-crime areas.
They also recognize that this is a significant time of the year to push this message.
“In a lot of neighborhoods in our underserved communities, there tends to be a lot of gunfire, gun violence towards the end of the year. In certain cultures, I guess, you celebrate the coming of the New Year with gunfire. So, we just want everybody to be mindful that guns kill people,” said Gee.
They ask anyone celebrating tonight, do so responsibly and without gunfire or violence.