INDIANAPOLIS — A trio of gun busts on Indy’s east side highlights IMPD’s newest crime fighting strategy.
IMPD is changing its FLEX teams that focused largely on narcotics to new Violence Reduction Teams with the goal of reducing the record-breaking pace of homicides and non-fatal shootings.
Responding to mentally disturbed man at an apartment complex on Eastridge drive, IMPD seized a fully automatic AR-15 style rifle with a hundred round drum.
Investigating a neighbor repeatedly causing problems near 10th and Oakland, East District officers arrested a convicted felon with a handgun.
While searching a home on East 34th Place, which has been shot up several times this month, IMPD arrested a 16-year-old in possession of a 9mm Carbine rifle.
Those cases were largely initiated by IMPD’s brand new Violence Reduction Teams.
“Law enforcement is not revolutionary, it’s evolutionary. Our Violence Reduction Teams are the next evolution of our FLEX team model,” said IMPD deputy chief Josh Barker.
All 6 IMPD districts will get a Violence Reduction Team, but more resources will be given to three districts where 78 percent of all the city’s homicides take place.
“Northwest, North and East will be given a second Violence Reduction Team to expand the number of personal to respond to the violent crimes,” said Barker.
Deputy chief Barker says the new Violent Reduction Teams will help target known repeat offenders and respond to violence, especially during the peak overnight hours.
“We are looking at assessing and redeploying resources to ensure we have the right people in the right places at the right time to combat these violent offenders,” said Barker.
Barker hopes the transition from narcotics-based FLEX teams to Violence Reduction Teams will save lives by preventing violent crime.
“We are trying to build a strategy that moves IMPD from less of a reactionary organization to a proactive organization,” said Barker.
Chief Barker didn’t want to get into specifics but added that the new Violence Reduction Teams are just one of several new strategies the department will unveil in the coming months.