INDIANAPOLIS — Since January 1, Indianapolis has been on another record pace for violence.
Rick Snyder, President of Lodge 86 of the Fraternal Order of Police, said that so far this year, 693 people have been shot in Indianapolis, 145 stabbed and 160 victims have died as the result of homicide.
In 2020, the city set a homicide record with 245 violent deaths, a tally Snyder claims may reach 300 by year’s end.
“We are coming to the point, and we want the governor to understand and be on standby, we may very well be calling on him to send emergency resources to this city,” said Snyder.
During an afternoon news conference, Snyder referred to multiple stories reported by Fox 59 News detailing murders committed by suspects who were free from pre-trial detention on lowered bonds while outfitted with Community Correction GPS monitoring systems.
Snyder called for an immediate review of bond protocols, plea agreements for violent offenders, review of pre-trial and post-conviction release of defendants and offenders, a meeting with local judges and examination of the current contract with a for-profit provider that has resulted in Marion County as the leading GPS monitoring client in the nation.
Before the FOP boss was on his way to a statehouse meeting with Speaker of the House Todd Huston and Senate President Pro Tem Rodric Bray, Snyder told reporters the FOP’s attorneys will ask the Indiana Supreme Court if Marion County superior judges are properly applying revised bond and release rules.
He added that his leadership will also ask the Attorney General to review non-governmental entities, such as the Bail Project, that facilitate bond payments for offenders while he reserves the option to call on Governor Holcomb to offer Indianapolis emergency assistance to fight violence.
In the early 1990s, then-Governor Evan Bayh sent Indiana State troopers into the streets of Gary to support local police in their attempts to bring peace to that troubled Indiana city.
“I don’t think that should be off the table,” said State Senator Jack Sandlin, a Republican from Indianapolis’ southside and a former IPD deputy chief. “It would be my intention when I get a meeting with the state police superintendent to discuss that with him.”
This summer, in a call for added enforcement, Indiana State Troopers have been on patrol on selected evenings in downtown Indianapolis where several people have been wounded during shootings in the South Meridian Street bar district.
State Representative Ed Delaney, an Indianapolis democrat and former IPD Merit Board member as well as the target of an attempted murder several years ago, said the FOP is casting blame for its own failures to protect Indianapolis streets.
“The state legislature does not monitor and regulate the Indianapolis police department or any other police department. The attorney general similarly does not do that and I would question his ability to do that,” said Delaney. “If the mayor thinks he needs assistance from the governor, he knows the phone number.”
Mayor Joe Hogsett’s office issued this response after Snyder’s remarks:
“The City continues to work with partners across the criminal justice system, locally and beyond.
The Mayor will present a proposed fiscal package centered around public safety to the City-County Council on August 9.”
Thursday morning the mayor will offer an update on IMPD’s plan to update its crime data collection and analysis system as well as ongoing efforts to curb violent crime.
Fox 59 News has not received a response from the governor’s office in reaction to Snyder’s comments.