Crime Watch 8

IMPD condemns ‘reckless’ stray bullet shootings of children after 6-year-old critically hurt

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — A 6-year-old girl was critically injured Thursday night when stray bullets flew into her home on the city’s northwest side.

At least one bullet struck the child while she was in bed, neighbors said.

The shooting was reported around 9:40 p.m. Thursday in the 4800 block of Oakwood Trail, near Georgetown Road and 71st Street.

The victim was stabilized at Riley Hospital for Children but suffered extensive injuries to her arm and torso, including possible internal organ damage, according to a woman in an adjacent apartment.

Police had no suspect information Friday and could not confirm the intended target.

Gloria Castillo, who lives on the same block, said she heard six to eight gunshots “right beside” her window.

She was watching TV with her husband and 2-year-old daughter when gunfire erupted in the apartment complex.

“I was really shocked — extremely shocked — because there are kids here, running around all day long,” Castillo told News 8. “I have a little one. We walk this area all day. It’s pretty scary.”

Stray bullets could have ricocheted into her apartment and struck her family, she added, prompting her to consider relocating.

At least two children were killed in Indianapolis this year by stray bullets.

In March, 8-year-old Rodgerick Payne Jr. was struck and killed by a stray bullet in his home on the city’s northeast side.

In May, 16-year-old Nya Cope was struck and killed by a stray bullet while she, her mother and a friend were driving to a restaurant.

Both shootings remain unsolved.

Police “grieve with all of the families who have been impacted by these reckless acts,” a spokesperson for the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department said in an emailed statement to News 8.

“IMPD officers will continue to work to hold people who commit violence accountable. We have ramped up staffing in units focused on violent crime, doubled down on our community-based beat policing model and are working to increase the capacity of our Behavioral Health Services unit,” the statement said.

Authorities urged residents to “please walk away instead of doing something that will fundamentally change your future.”

Anybody with information about violence committed in Indianapolis can call Crime Stoppers anonymously at (317) 262-TIPS.