Towne and Terrace violence does not define city’s far east side, police and neighbors insist

Crimetracker

INDIANAPOLIS — While IMPD officers and neighborhood advocates on the east side give condolences to the loved ones of a 25-year-old woman killed in a housing complex Friday, they do not want the recent killings at the Towne and Terrace complex to overshadow the positive work being accomplished.

“Don’t give up,” Leila Darden, Far East Side Community Council president, said. “Don’t let stories like this overshadow the good that we are all committed on doing. Still continue to fight the good fight. What’s great about the far east side is our pride. We are prideful. We love where we come from. Just definitely do not give up the fight. We’re going to continue to work together, all together.”

Police say Naytasia Williams was shot and killed by a security guard, not affiliated with IMPD, as she sat in a car on Brentwood Drive. This shooting is the fourth homicide at the Towne and Terrace complex in just two months.

“Due to the makeup of the roads and the one way in and the one way out and certain individuals that are in that particular complex not being very forthcoming with the police, we have found it hard to do our jobs and investigate fully,” Commander Richard Riddle of IMPD’s East District said.

Riddle was adamant that the man who is believed to be the shooter, but has not yet been arrested, is not affiliated with IMPD.

“Again, our message has been today that IMPD had no involvement in the shooting of this female,” Riddle said. “We simply responded like we do to any other crime in the community. I applaud those that came forward but we have to break down these barriers to get more people involved, more people comfortable and trusting of the police so we can go after these individuals that are creating chaos and havoc in these neighborhoods.”

Riddle said he is concerned about the reason many witnesses did come forward following the shooting.

“It’s sad that where we are in policing and across this nation that the only reason people cooperated is because they believed that IMPD was involved in that shooting,” Riddle said.

In light of this shooting, Darden wants everyone to know there are still many positive efforts happening on the far east side, with plenty of officers and organizations working to provide resources to neighbors.

“Especially lately there has been a lot of criminal activity that has been on the news,” Darden said of the area surrounding Towne and Terrace. “Basically it’s starting to create this perception that that’s kind of all that’s going on there. These residents, I mean that area is stricken with poverty, no resources, no grocery store, no educational tools, and so what we are currently working on is trying to do a resource blitz over there to try to get as many resources over there as possible.”

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