Make your home page

3 men found dead in school parking lot; 4th taken to hospital

Three men were found in a vehicle parked near a school on the northwest side of Indianapolis on Aug. 14, 2023. A fourth man found inside the vehicle was taken to a local hospital. (WISH Photo/Amicia Ramsey)

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Three men were found dead inside a silver SUV parked outside a middle school on the northwest side of Indianapolis Monday morning, police say.

Police have not said exactly how the three men died, or given their names.

The vehicle was parked in sight of students as they arrived for school at Jonathan Jennings School 109, an Indianapolis public school. Several parents took their children home right away.

Police found four men in the SUV sitting just a couple of feet from the playground. One man, who was said to be intoxicated was taken to a nearby hospital. The other three men were pronounced dead at the scene. Police have ruled out an act of violence as a cause of death.

Kenya Triplett, who lives across the street from the school, told I-Team 8 she noticed the SUV parked in front of the playground late Sunday night. She says a lot of people come to the playground and school parking lot to get high.

“The way my house is, I can look out the window and look straight across (the street). I just kept looking at that (SUV) all night, like ‘What are they doing?’ There was never action around (the car), not even a window up that I could see,” Triplett said.

Pastor Wayne Moore’s church is a block away from the school. Many youths from his congregation attend Jonathan Jennings. He says incidents like these deeply affect the community.

“Where we stand right (now) is a trouble spot. A lot of things go on (here),” he said. “And still, to not have blocked (the SUV from view). I went into the school and talked with the principal about it. I saw (the men’s) legs, I saw who was in the back seat, who was in the front seat.”

Just after 11 a.m., Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department brought in a mobile command vehicle to block the view of the parking lot from the students and parents at the school.

Indianapolis Public Schools also rerouted some of the school buses Monday morning around the parking lot to shield the students from the scene.

“(This affects) each and every family in this community. It is a diverse community, a diverse housing complex. At this time, (we’ve become) familiar with these types of things happening. They hear sirens, they see cars pull up all the time in this particular area. It is affecting (us),” Moore said.