Crime Watch 8

Indianapolis hits 200 homicides; community calling for plan of action

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Indianapolis hit a grim milestone late Tuesday night: 200 homicides so far this year. That is the highest homicide count in the city’s history.

President of the Indianapolis Fraternal Order of Police Rick Snyder says he and other community leaders warned that Indianapolis was headed toward another record-setting year of violence when the city saw a surge in 2019.

This month alone 109 people have been shot and there have been 29 homicides.

“If we maintain that pace that we are in right now in October, if we maintain that in November and December it means we finish the year at more than 250 homicides,” said Snyder.

He is calling for Indianapolis Mayor Joe Hogsett, who has appointed himself as the public safety director, to give a clear plan to address violence in the city that can show immediate and tangible results.

“What he and our other elected leaders have to figure out is how do you get additional resources to make this work. It is not all money, but that is a good portion of it,” said Snyder.

When asked about his plan during a public safety walk on Wednesday, Hogsett did not provide specific details.

“Well our plan that we have been implementing for the last four years remains the same, just becoming larger and more robust,” he said. “I will say though that one difference that may be a game-changer is the collaboration that we are currently engaged with the NYU School, they are helping us analyze how we as a police department are doing, particularly in relationship to other police departments in the communities where they have experience.”

Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department Assistant Police Chief Chris Bailey said that IMPD has increased beat policing and invested in a ballistics program. He says IMPD is already spread thin and has few resources to give out.

“We are not going to arrest our way out of this problem. There are other partners in the community and in the criminal justice system that also, we need to find out, what are they doing to reduce violent crime in the city as well, not just the police department,” said Bailey.

Snyder says that there are gaps in the criminal justice system that need to be addressed to stop violent offenders from continually being released back on the streets.

“People aren’t fearful of the system, they are not fearful of the punishment,” said Bailey.

“We are moving backwards in the time that we need to be moving forwards,” said Snyder.

For comparison, News 8 pulled homicide reports from other major cities from 2019.

Homicides in 2019:

  • Chicago 451
  • Detroit 272
  • Indianapolis 172

All of the above cities have seen a drastic increase in homicides this year.