INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — The Dreasjon Reed case will be decided by a grand jury, but it could be another month or longer before the investigation is complete.
On May 6, Reed was running from police in high-speed chase on Interstate 65. At 6:16 p.m., Reed was shot by an Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department officer in a small field at the intersection of West 62nd Street and Michigan Road. At the time, Chris Bailey, the assistant chief of police, said, “Any information I give you could change as the investigation progresses.”
Indianapolis has heard very little about the investigation since then. Timothy Williams, a retired Los Angeles Police Department detective who specializes in police use of force and procedure, says science will tell the story from here.
“These cases take a while. If there is alleged shooting back and forth like the allegations here, you have to corroborate all this stuff. You just can’t say, ‘Yeah, it happened,’ without proving that it happened,” Williams said.
If Reed had a gun and shot at police, as IMPD said he did, Williams says, there will be plenty of evidence to support that claim.
“There should be some shell casings in the area. Did they forensically examine those shell casings? Did they come from that gun? Did the extraction marks on the casings fit the gun?” Williams said.
He also says that if Reed fired a gun there should be evidence on his hands and the shell casing.
“On that shell casing, there is science. Somebody had to put those bullets in a magazine. When touch something, as I’m touching my phone here, I’m leaving science behind,” Williams said in a videoconference with News 8.
There have been at least three separate investigations of this case. IMPD has an internal and criminal investigation and, at the direction of the special prosecutor, Indiana State Police is doing a separate investigation. That means witnesses and evidence have been or soon will be examined at least three times.
Retired FBI agent Michael Tabman says more isn’t always better.
“So there is a danger also in having two investigations. There is going to be conflicting information that is going to make a prosecution … problematic. There are going to be discrepancies,” Tabman said.
Retired Agent Tabman says forensics and aballistics will be key to this case.
“And if all that scientific evidence matches and the officers give credible testimony and there is nothing to the contrary, then there is a very good chance the officers will be found to acted reasonably,” Tabman said.
Both investigators say cases such as this one take time, and say people have to take into consideration there is an election coming up and that could delay the case further.