INDIANAPOLIS – Court records are providing new information on what led to a deadly shooting Thursday morning at the American Legion Mall in downtown Indianapolis.
Just before 7 o’clock Thursday morning, IMPD were called to the American Legion Mall park along north Meridian and found 52-year-old Anthony Drummer shot to death.
Police say 30-year-old Howard Moffitt immediately walked up to police with his hands raised and confessed to the crime.
According to the affidavit in the case, Moffitt told police he saw the victim engaged in a sex act in the park, so he walked up and shot him in the head.
Moffitt also made various unusual claims that indicate he may have been suffering from mental health issues.
Police say Moffitt claimed he was a judge, he was in the military, he had taken law classes and he was glad he shot the victim.
Another witness on the scene told police they had seen the victim and suspect arguing the day before the shooting.
Unfortunately, violence involving the homeless and those suffering mental problems in the American Legion Park and nearby University Park are nothing new, but the city is working to address those issues.
“We need to make sure we’re always listening and always adapting, which is what we’re doing now,” said Deputy Mayor for health and public safety Lauren Rodriguez.
While IMPD has long employed a homeless outreach unit, the city has also begun deploying Mobile Crisis Assessment Teams, where an officer partners with a trained social worker.
This year the city also launched a pilot program in downtown where they respond to 911 calls with a team of mental health specialists, called Clinician Led Community Response.
Their goal is to de-escalate mental health emergencies that IMPD is not equipped to stop.
“Responding to people going through mental health crises or substance abuse issues, an IMPD officer can sometimes make it worse and IMPD recognizes that,” said Rodriguez.
Court records show before he was killed on Thursday, the victim had been homeless and had multiple warrants out for his arrest after he left the Duvall Residence Center in April and never returned.
The suspect is being held without bond pending the filing of formal charges. He’s due in court for an initial hearing next week.