INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (July 7, 2014)— Community and faith-based leaders as well as city leaders are expressing deep concerns about the trend of violence in Indianapolis after Indianapolis Metropolitan police officer Perry Renn was shot to death on the east side Saturday.
Pastor Horatio Luster with the Ten Point Coalition said there have been deep-rooted cultural and systematic issues at play for years in some of Indy’s most crime-ridden areas.
“We’re horrified about what’s going on in our community,” said Luster.
The Ten Point Coalition focuses on outreach programs to in the zip codes with high crime rates.
“We’re just taking one bite at a time out of this elephant and this is a huge elephant in the city of Indy that we’re dealing with,” said Luster. He said more resources and more people on board with the coalition’s mission would help.
Luster also said they have seen a difference in targeted zip codes where the coalition has intervened in young peoples’ lives including the 46205 and 46208 areas.
Indianapolis Metro Police Chief Rick Hite also touched on the issues surrounding repeat offenders and illegal guns.
“Let’s be clear here, the city is under assault. It’s not just the police department,” said Hite.
He called Indianapolis a great community that wants to live peacefully. He said recent crime statistics show the vast majority of violent offenders and victims of violence have some sort of criminal history.
“What we’re finding is when we look at the guns being carried by these individuals, they’re felons. The question becomes how as a society, as a community will we allow the individual to continue to carry that weapon? To be sentenced and not serve the time then be allowed back into the community? Communities should be outraged when they return,” Hite said.
The suspected shooter in Renn’s death is 25-year-old Major Davis II. He has been arrested for drugs and convicted of misdemeanors. Davis was critically wounded in the shootout Saturday and is in the ICU at Eskenazi Hospital.