INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — At 8:30 Sunday night, News 8’s Richard Essex was in downtown Indianapolis when he spotted several protesters gathered at the intersection of Washington and Pennsylvania streets.
While he headed toward the crowd, police also were nearby. Police had ordered them to stop. A few did and others ran. Using his cellphone, Essex was rolling when the protesters started running.
On Monday afternoon, IMPD Chief Randal Taylor addressed the video.
“One of these videos shows force being used during an arrest of several individuals. I have directed our internal affairs unit to immediately conduct a speedy and through investigation into this incident,” Taylor said.
In the video, it is clear police had ordered two women to the ground; they didn’t comply. You can hear one officer say ‘Light her up.” That’s when another officer instantly shot her with rubber bullets. The woman still refused the officers commands, and she was hit repeatedly on the legs with a baton.
“While I don’t have enough information yet for disciplinary actions, I can tell you that this type of incident is exactly the type of incident that the new use of force review board we are creating is aimed at reviewing,” said Taylor.
The city has endured unprecedented violence, looting and civil unrest. The countywide curfew had been in effect for 30 minutes when the incident shown in this video happened.
Protesters and others in the immediate downtown area had been warned several times to either go home or face arrest.
Mayor Joe Hogsett was in the WISH-TV studio Monday morning. One of our questions was whether there had been complaints about police acting too aggressively toward the protesters.
“Whatever needs to be investigated has been … those investigations will begin and continue, and if there are any officers who have acted inappropriately, the chief will be given a recommendation of discipline,” Hogsett said.
No word on whether the officers involved have been placed on leave pending that internal investigation.