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Neighbor doubts need for deadly IMPD shooting

(Photo aired on WISH-TV)

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — People who live in the area where Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department officers shot and killed a man on Thursday are casting doubt on if the shooting was necessary.

Jeffrey Johnson lives next door to where the shooting happened. He told I-Team 8 he was taking out the trash, and took cover inside when he heard the shots.

“I heard yelling and then multiple gunshots. When I came back out the front door, I saw a black man laying in the backyard. His face was in the grass. Police started trying to revive him, but they couldn’t,” Johnson said.

IMPD said on Thursday that they pulled over 49-year-old Gary Harrell for reckless driving. As the officer spoke with him, Harrell started running.

The officer ran after him and shot him at least once. Police say Harrell was holding a gun.

“From my perspective, he couldn’t have got far. It’s a gated yard. They didn’t have to shoot him. They could have chased him and tackled him,” Johnson said.

Police say they found drugs on the scene. They did not say where those were found. Right now, the drugs are being tested to determine what they are.

Harrell’s neighbor came to the place where he was killed on Friday to place a cross in remembrance.

The neighbor wrote on the cross, “Gary couldn’t have outrun police on his best day! The officer chose to kill him in cold blood as he ran away in fear, only to be shot in the back and killed by someone paid to serve and protect him.”

IMPD has not released any more information about the shooting.