INDIANAPOLIS — Drug Trafficking and the illegal sales of guns are on the rise in Indianapolis, according to The City of Peace Coalition.
This week, they met with federal partners about the growing crime problem and blamed it on those two factors.
Lachelle Norton knows firsthand the impact of Indy’s violence. Her son, Chris Johnson, and his friend were murdered on Sharon Avenue nearly two years ago.
“I’m asking Indiana to change their laws. It’s time to change laws man. We can’t keep living like this. I mean, we’ve lost a half a generation of Black men to gun violence,” Norton said.
Norton isn’t alone with this pain.
Reverend Charles Harrison says Indianapolis is on pace to reach 200 homicides this year.
“The underground economy becomes an employer of unfortunately of a lot of people of color, particularly in the Black community. We see this with a lot of younger people who have just lost hope,” said Indy TenPoint Coalition President Rev. Charles Harrison.
Rev. Harrison and members of The City of Peace Coalition met with federal agents this week to discuss the increase in violence.
“The question was asked, ‘Has the drug trafficking expanded in Indianapolis?’ The answer was yes,” Rev. Harrison explained.
He added that the increased sale of guns through the black market is adding to the problem.
“They’re selling them at gas stations all over the city. A lot of times that leads to drama, which leads to people being shot and killed or shot and injured,” Rev. Harrison said.
Norton doesn’t know who murdered her son or why. She’s offering up a $3,000 reward for anyone who does.
“I’m ready for this to be over. For all the other homicide victim families, I can feel your pain. We all want justice,” Norton said.
Anyone with information on Johnson’s murder should call police or Crime Stoppers at (317) 262-TIPS.
Harrison says getting more resources in these areas where violent crimes are may lead to preventing them from happening.
The City of Peace Coalition is currently in talks with Mayor Joe Hogsett discussing how to get a handle on the violence.