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Marion County Sheriff’s Office video shows violent attack that killed Deputy John Durm

Video released in Marion County Sheriff’s deputy’s death

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — On Wednesday, the Marion County Sheriff’s Office showed a 14-minute video of the actions of murder suspect Orlando Mitchell the day he allegedly killed Deputy John Durm.

Halfway through the video, Durm parked the jail transport van like he had done a hundred times before, and went around back to let inmate Orlando Mitchell out of the van. Durm turned his back to close the van door, and Mitchell attacked.

The attack lasted around two minutes.

The video shows Mitchell taking keys from Durm, which he used to unlock the handcuffs and start the jail transport van. He quickly fled the scene.

A Cumberland police officer spotted Mitchell behind the wheel of the van and sounded the alarm.

The officer also found an unresponsive Durm and called for help. In just a matter of seconds, cameras at the Criminal Justice Center recorded Mitchell driving the van right through the security gates. 

Mitchell raced south, away from the Criminal Justice Center towards Prospect Street, just as two Marion County Sheriff’s deputies pursued him. Mitchell crashed the van and was quickly taken back into custody.

One question surrounding the incident remains unanswered: How was Mitchell able to remove the chains around his stomach.

Video from earlier in the day shows Mitchell with the chain around as he went to and arrived at Eskenazi Hospital. The hospital surveillance footage shows Mitchell fidgeting with his ankle cuffs.  

There are no video cameras inside the jail transport vans, but Forestal says it appears the handcuffs and chains had been put on properly.

“But as you put that chain around, you can fatten yourself up to try and make it so later it will be loose we don’t know that just in viewing it appears they were put on properly,” Marion County Sheriff Kerry Forestal said Wednesday.

Forestal adds that though many have pointed fingers, there is only one thing to blame.

“Let me make it clear that there is one person at fault here. Some speculated that the fault lies in understaffing, some say it is defective equipment or even complacency. It wasn’t understaffing that killed John Durm, it was it wasn’t faulty equipment that killed him, it was Orlando Mitchell,” Forestal said.