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IMPD identifies off-duty officer who shot man during disturbance at Indianapolis bar

IMPD is investigating a police shooting at took place at a far east side bar in the early morning of Oct. 14, 2023. (WISH Photo/Daryl Black)

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — A man with the Indianapolis police force for 17 years was identified Friday as the officer who used his firearm to shoot a man during a disturbance Saturday at a bar on the city’s east side.

Roman Ervin-Williams was off duty when he tried to defuse the disturbance involving Mar-Kel Sampson, Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department has previously shared. Sampson fired shorts toward the Ervin-Williams, and then he shot Sampson.

Ervin-Williams was wearing a bodycam, but that video footage has not yet been released. As is standard practice, the officer was placed on administrative leave. Eventually, the IMPD Use of Force board will review the case.

The shooting happened just before 2 a.m. Saturday near the entrance to Bubbaz Bar & Grill, which is located in a strip mall at 10030 E. Washington St. That’s just off North Mitthoefer Road near the Washington Square shopping mall.

Sampson, of Indianapolis, was arrested early Sunday. He was scheduled to be charged Monday afternoon in Marion Superior Court 27. The preliminary felony charges are listed in online court records as battery by means of a deadly weapon; criminal recklessness-shoots firearm into a building; and pointing a firearm at another.

The Marion County jail’s online Inmate Lookup did not list Sampson as being incarcerated on Friday afternoon.

Sampson was initially taken to a hospital in critical condition, police said Saturday. Another male shot at the bar took himself to a hospital, and was last said to be in critical condition. A female shot at the bar, who was located by authorities about a half-hour later at a home in the 2800 block of Carla Court, was last said to be stable.

The bar shooting was the city’s 10th police shooting in 2023. An 11th police shooting happened Thursday.

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