I-Team 8

Mayor Hogsett: Adding 200 cops to IMPD will help anti-violence campaign

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Mayor Joe Hogsett said Monday his three year anti-violence campaign depends on a fully staffed police department.

The city has sweetened the deal for new cops at the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department with signing bonuses and raises. 

“I think primarily the challenge here in Indianapolis has been one of the dangers of the profession,” Hogsett said.

The mayor is spending $45 million over the next three years on his anti-violence campaign. He says the city needs 200 new cops to make sure the campaign is successful.

“To fully implement our three-year anti-violence we need a fully staffed, well trained IMPD,” Hogsett said.

When Hogsett was first elected seven years ago, he asked the city county council for an additional 150 new police officers.

The council was slow to fund the positions. However, keeping officers in Indianapolis has been a challenge for some time.

News 8 reported in 2018 that more than 150 cops left the department in 2017 and 2018, which is more than the department anticipated.

Adding insult to the injury in 2018, the Seattle Police Department put up recruiting billboards in Indianapolis.

In 2020, aggressive police behavior added additional pressure to the recruitment.

“A few years ago with the death of George Floyd, it a well changed the nature of the way the country looks at police,” Hogsett said.

In 2021, Indianapolis saw a record number of murders. Despite the numbers, Hogsett said this morning his investments in crime are paying off.

“Intentional homicides in the city of Indianapolis have gone down 18% year-over-year and are going to continue to, I think the investments we are making are having a very good, positive, effect,” Hogsett said.

The city is spending one million dollars from Biden’s American Rescue Plan to recruit police in Marion County and the city is putting IMPD recruiting billboards up in Fort Wayne, Bloomington, Cincinnati, Louisville, Detroit and St. Louis.