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Top 5 most dangerous Marion Co. ZIP codes ranked

Five most dangerous ZIP codes in Marion County

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — A Marion County Coroner’s Office annual report ranked the top five most dangerous ZIP codes in the county. 

According to the report, 35 homicides involving a firearm happened within ZIP code 46218 in 2023, 20 in 46226 and 46235, 18 in 46201, and 12 in 46208. 

The homicides in each ZIP code combined make up 47% of the homicides that occurred in the entire county in 2023. 

Each one of those numbers has a face, though. 

16-year-old Reese Hamilton lives in the Martindale-Brightwood neighborhood and experiences the violence firsthand. 

He says each time he leaves the house, he’s entering a war zone. 

“Sometimes you might have to get on the ground, or get up under the bed because you hear the bullets so close,” Hamilton said. 

Seeing that violence firsthand started when he was a young kid. 

“My family friend, he got killed three doors down from where I was staying,” Hamilton said. “It was just brain matter all over the walls, blood everywhere, he had been dragged down the street. Then, in the same year, my uncle got shot at his house, on the same street.”

At eight years old, he asked his mom why the violence was normalized and when it would stop. She didn’t have an answer for him. 

He took matters into his own hands and wrote a letter to the mayor. 

After meeting with the mayor, he decided to organize a peace walk and found the “Reese’s Blue Ribbon Project,” which aims to promote safety in the area.

“I wrote a letter to the mayor, saying that I wanted everything to change and that I needed help, and that I needed help because I couldn’t do it by myself, I was just eight years old at the time,” Hamilton said. “We decided we could do a peace walk and over hundreds of people were there in the streets at 8 o’clock in the morning.”

Since then, he has hosted five peace walks in the Martindale-Brightwood neighborhood and plans to host a bike ride for peace in July. 

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