INDIANAPOLIS, Ind.- Two teenagers are recovering after being shot Sunday night in what are the latest incidents of youth violence in Indianapolis.
The separate shootings aren’t connected, but one victim was taken to the hospital in critical condition. This is now bringing the focus back to the city’s effort to curb teenage violence.
Just after 8:00 p.m. Sunday evening, IMPD said investigators they found 19-year-old Ke’vion Gilmore shot in the leg outside an east side Rally’s. Then just after 10:00 p.m., police found a 17-year-old boy lying in the parking lot of a west side Foot Locker, shot and in critical condition.
“It’s a difficult situation for the community as a whole.” said Reverend David Greene Sr., president of the Concerned Clergy of Indianapolis. He has been trying to tackle the problem of teens and guns for years. Despite efforts of the city and local organizations, Greene thinks the problem is getting worse.
“You can almost get them like candy, so everybody almost has a gun,” said Greene.
IMPD had no updates on either victim’s condition, adding that almost twenty rounds may have been fired outside the Foot Locker in what they believe may have stemmed from a neighborhood dispute.
“Clearly the young people now are engaged in gun violence." said Greene. “They’re committed to it and we’ve got to change that mindset.”
Part of that effort, city officials say, is redirecting young people towards being more productive.
“I certainly hope we’re moving in the right direction," said Indianapolis Mayor Joe Hogsett.
On Monday, Hogsett touted his summer jobs and violence reduction initiatives.
“We employed more young people this summer than ever before." said Hogsett. “We have deployed now the peacemakers out into the community.”
In July, IMPD reported that it knew of 45 young people, between ages 13 and 15, who’d been caught up in 22 different shooting incidents. IMPD says it's a sign that teens too often turn to guns to settle the score.
“We’ve got to do something different as a community and address it all the way down to our young people because that’s not the solution,” said Greene.
Police say Sunday night’s victims and witnesses are not being cooperative, which makes it harder for them to find who’s responsible. That being said, if you know anything you’re asked to call IMPD or Crime Stoppers at 317-262-8477.