“We need help, we cannot do this alone.”
That was IMPD Assistant Chief Chris Bailey Thursday asking the public to help with information and tip regarding the city’s persistent problem of gun violence.
And while citizen cooperation with investigations is often a key in an arrest, IMPD has other partners in both state and federal governments helping battle this chronic gun violence problem.
Since January 2022, the US Attorney’s office has successfully prosecuted 120 defendant of firearms-related offenses, with another 125 individuals still facing charges.
”We have a number of strategies that we’re employing. One of the most important things we can do is getting more resources so that we can try more of these cases,” said US Attorney Zachary Myers.
ATF Assistant Special Agent in Charge John Nokes noting his agency is working towards more cases ready for prosecution, ““We have several significant firearms trafficking investigations underway right now, where Indiana is a source state for other states.”
For years, Indiana has been part of the illegal gun pipeline to Chicago where firearms are harder to get and in high demand.
State government has assisted in a number of ways.
The Indiana State Police Indianapolis post this year put together an All Crime Policing Team targeting high-crime area specifically looking for drugs, guns, and serious violent offenders.
Two years ago, state government created and funded the Indiana Gun Crimes Task that focuses solely on Marion and the surrounding counties.
State Senator Aaron Freeman (R- Indianapolis) points to a couple of new laws to assist the gun crime fight. One new law makes so-called “Glock switches” illegal”. Another increases possible sentences for habitual offenders.
“Public safety is job one and if it’s not we should close the doors and be done because we got a problem. As you saw yesterday, we have a huge problem in the city,” said Freeman.