IMPD arrests man accused of damaging 4 squad cars during 2 different police chases

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – An Indianapolis man accused of repeatedly stealing trucks and destroying IMPD squad cars to avoid arrest is behind bars again in Marion County.

Police say George Leachman has destroyed four police cruisers during two different chases dating back to last year. That’s why some say the story illustrates the flaws of the legal system in Marion County.

On patrol near an apartment complex at 25th and Rural in mid-August, an IMPD officer spotted a stolen F-350 pickup truck. When that officer tried to make a traffic stop at 28th and Wheeler, the driver did something unexpected.

“The driver all of a sudden decided to put it in reverse and back over the police car,” said IMPD Sgt. Jim Gillespie.

With the squad car smashed under the weight of the truck, the suspect sped away, but court records claim a month later the same officer spotted the same suspect driving a second F-350 pickup.

That helped an IMPD SWAT team track Leachman down to an apartment on Oxford lane where they Tased and arrested the accused thief this week.

“I don’t think we could ask for a better outcome. We got someone who was willing to put other lives at risk behind bars,” said Gillespie.

Last year, prosecutors say Leachman damaged three IMPD squad cars and wounded two officers during a chase while driving another stolen F-350.

Leachman pleaded guilty and was sentenced to three years of GPS monitoring, during which police say he cut off his ankle bracelet and disappeared until he allegedly drove onto the hood of the squad car.

“These are preventable if people stay in jail,” said FOP president Rick Snyder. “We shouldn’t be chasing these people, because they should still be locked up.”

Synder says Leachman’s case illustrates again how the revolving door of justice in Marion County is putting officers and the public in harm’s way by not keeping convicted criminals behind bars.

“It is a symptom of larger problem which is a broken system, specifically here in Marion County,” said Snyder. “It’s a system that is failing to hold people accountable.”

In addition to the multiple charges in Marion County, Leachman also has an active warrant out of Hendricks County for auto theft involving yet another F-350 pickup truck stolen out of Plainfield.