Family of man killed by IMPD officers wants video made public

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (June 5, 2015) -- The widow of a man killed by IMPD officers in April is calling on the city to make its investigation public.

"The entire family is hurting because we need answers as to why my husband was gunned down," Debbie Long said.

Long's husband, Mack Long, died in a police action shooting in April. An officer pulled Long over during a traffic stop in which he jumped out of the car and ran. Family told FOX59 at the time that Long was a convicted felon, carrying a gun registered to his wife and may have been scared.

Two officers chased Long into a neighboring yard and fired shots, killing him.

The day after his death, IMPD's top brass held a news conference in which they described what they believed happened. One investigator indicated Long did not answer verbal commands and was struggling for an officer's gun after initial shots were fired.

The department also acknowledged the existence of two videos of the shooting, one shot by a witness and the other by a body camera worn by one of the officers involved in the shooting.

"I really believe that that video is the key to unlock what we did not see and what we don’t understand as a family," Debbie Long said.

The video has not been released, though, and Long said she has been told it may never be made public. It's an answer she found hard to stomach as she watched other cities' police departments release their own video of police-involved deaths.

"If they can do it, why can't the state of Indiana?" Long said.

It lead her to take a stand, circling a petition that calls for a coroner's inquiry into Long's death that would require all information be made public and for the release of the videos.

"This is important to us. We need closure, we need an understanding. We need to know that we can believe in our police department and trust that they’re going to do the right thing at all costs," Long said.

The family even said they're willing to accept the answers if they point to the officers as having done the right thing.

"If my husband was at any fault of his own and it cost him his life, we are more than willing to accept that. All we want is the absolute truth and that’s it," Long said.

IMPD officers refused to comment for this story, citing a pending grand jury investigation by the prosecutor's office.

FOX59 has repeatedly requested the video and been denied by the city. That request is currently in the appeals process.

You can access the petition by Long's family at the link here.

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