Make your home page

IMPD website offers resources for survivors of nonfatal shootings

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — An Indianapolis mom is pushing to help more families impacted by gun violence.

About nine years ago, her son miraculously survived a shooting while at a birthday party.

With her help, Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department and IUPUI have created a new online tool for non-fatal shooting survivors. They want to assure these families know that they are not alone and that help is available.

“To have things at your fingertip, it’s just really, I want to say it can be calming,” DeAndra Dycus said.

Dycus and her family are turning their pain into purpose. “Nine years later, we’re still on the fight we’re still on the journey.”

In 2014, her son was shot in the head while at a birthday party, but, while he survived, he came home unable to speak or walk on his own. DeAndra said, “DeAndre left home one day. He was ambulatory and he could talk to me. Forty-five days later, he came home and he wasn’t able to do any of those things. I didn’t know what to do.”

She’s an advocate with IMPD’s nonfatal victim advocacy and support program.

With the help of IUPUI, the group has launched a website for families impacted by gun violence. It includes links to mental health resources, shelter services, transportation services, and legal services.

“If I’m in the hospital and I think, ‘Oh, I can go to this website and check for a therapist when I’m released’ or ‘connect with a support group when I’m released,’ it just can give you a peace of mind,” DeAndra said.

Lauren Magee, an assistant professor at IUPUI, says conversations about the website started in 2022. “Just kind of really organic conversations in the community, what were we needing, what is missing, and this was the one that kept coming up, that everything was very siloed, so it seemed like a fairly easy fix for 2023 that we could create a website.”

“To now know that there’s access for families to just click a link, be able to pick up the phone and even call us, all of our information is on the website that again it gives a peace of mind that I didn’t have when my journey first started,” DeAndra said.

Mental health resources