Officers patrol, protect despite their grief over fallen brother

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INDIANAPOLIS – Since the shooting death of IMPD Officer Perry Renn, our officers who wear the badge are protecting and serving with heavy hearts.

Monday night, at a rolling roll call on Randolph Street on the city’s east side, community members got the chance to say thanks.

“It seemed even more critical that we take this opportunity to come together and at least say thanks,” said Zach Adamson, City-County Councillor.

The rolling roll call was planned for weeks but took on a new meaning Monday night.

“The timing is kind of different than normal for these events. Our officers are out here every night knowing that they can come up against violence. They know the dangers inherent in this profession,” said Capt. Craig Fishburn, with IMPD’s east district.

Policework doesn’t sleep. And two days after the shooting death of Officer Perry Renn, officers are still hard at work putting their lives on the line, despite their grief.

“We all know what we’re getting into,” said Officer Bill Wogan, who took FOX 59 along on patrol on Monday afternoon, “I think it lets all of the officers know that danger is out there. Be careful on every single run. I think it’s definitely a wakeup call.”

Wogan patrols the east side on evening shift. He said he tries not to think too much about the dangers of the job, the cruel reality of the streets, that someone with a gun can take your life.

“It’s a dangerous job, and there’s constant reminders of it,” he said.

It’s that pressure that may hit home for some who patrol our city.

“When they’re saying, it’s not as safe in this town as it used to be, it has an affect on them,” said Allen Rader, a licensed clinical social worker.

Rader said a traumatic experience like an officer’s killing can harm an officer’s sense of safety, developed through their bond with one another.

“It’s just going to be tougher,” said Rader.

The fight against crime in Indianapolis is hard enough anyway. IMPD is understaffed, though recruits are on the way. Officers on the streets are always on the move, even in the wake of a fallen brother.

“Yeah it’s on your mind, but people still call 911 and need the police every day,” said Wogan.