INDIANAPOLIS — The Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department held a community conversation Wednesday night in hopes of answering questions and increasing transparency when it comes to how the department conducts investigations. 

About 20 people came out to IMPD’s Community Conversation Wednesday night at the Community Justice Center.

“It’s just that it’s a conversation. We need to listen. We all need to listen to each other,” IMPD Victim Assistance Manager Lisa Brown said. “We’re just going to be educating people on what we do and then we are going to listen to their concerns.”

Six different agencies within IMPD and local law enforcement spoke at the meeting: 

  • IMPD Homicide
  • IMPD Crime Lab
  • Chaplain
  • IMPD Victim’s Assistance
  • Marion County Coroner’s Office
  • Marion County Prosecutor’s Office

All of them answered common questions ranging from ‘Why does it take so long to process a crime scene?’ to ‘What holds up police from making arrests and taking it to trial?’ 

Many of those in attendance were family members of murder victims. 

There were mixed reactions on how people felt the meeting went. 

“I feel like I didn’t get nowhere,” said Derico Young, whose daughter was murdered in May 2021. “Because I had questions and I just had to stop. Because it’s like I’m not about to tear up because this here is just too much and it’s just not right. I don’t know who they’re here for.”

“I personally think it went well,” said Lachelle Norton, whose son was murdered in January 2019. “I didn’t like what the prosecutor said unfortunately we have a lot of homicides going on in our city because of Indiana laws.”

The three biggest issues people brought authorities to task for were: 

  • Response times from police and not getting calls back from authorities 
  • Indiana laws limiting when a case can be tried or a person charged
  • Lack of clarity from prosecutors and police when it comes to details of what’s going on with the case

Overall, those we talked to said that while they may still have questions, they are grateful law enforcement is trying to give them answers 

“I’ve been to community meetings before where they just talk and we just sit there,” said Cheryl Shockley, whose son was murdered in Aug. 2020. “So this where you can ask questions was very good. Even though there is no real satisfaction ultimately.”

IMPD encourages anyone who didn’t make it out to the meeting to give them a call with any questions. If you have any tips about recent crime, call Crime Stoppers with any tips at (317) 262-TIPS.