INDIANAPOLIS, IN– Family members of a man shot and killed by police are remembering his life, while demanding answers from officers.
IMPD officers said Thursday after a routine traffic stop, Aaron Bailey, 45, led police on a chase that ended with a crash at 23rd and Aqueduct. At some point, officers shot and killed him. No weapon was found in Bailey’s car. Police had issued a warrant for his arrest just two days prior for a violation on a previous theft charge. Whether the shooting was justified is under investigation.
Friday evening, Bailey’s family joined dozens of others and community groups in a rally downtown across from police headquarters. They asked others not to focus on his past or attack his character, but focus on the type of person he was. Relatives said that’s someone who loved his family.
“He was a good person, he loved his kids, he loved his family,” Bailey’s daughter, Erica Bailey, said.
The group demanded transparency and answers from police.
“We are asking for transparency from IMPD. We would like all of the information. We want to know why he was even pulled over to being with,” Satchuel Cole, the vice president of the group Don’t Sleep, said.
Cole said they want a special prosecutor, an investigation from an outside agency and information about the officers involved.
“All I know is that at some point in order to be within policy they had to be in fear of their life or someone else so there had to be something that was done in order to trigger that kind of mindset in our officers,” IMPD Chief Bryan Roach said during a press conference Thursday.
Roach is vowing to be as open as possible about the ongoing investigative and administrative processes.
FOX59 News obtained an email he wrote to his department.
He writes in part, “I have heard from many in our community that our ability to convey a valid review of the shooting of an unarmed African-American male over the course of the process is still unlikely to satisfy the hurt, frustration and anger of the community. There is a thoughtful and deep felt concern about our process, training and policies””
Roach writes moving forward, they’ll focus on building a better relationship with those they serve, writing “Be mindful of your responsibility to serve and protect in a manner that is understanding and caring about all those we encounter, regardless of the circumstances.”
But for Bailey’s family, nothing will bring back their loved one.
“I think we all just want to know why, why it had to happen like that because it was a different route they could have took,” Angela Bailey, Bailey’s step-daughter, said.
Later Friday night, Bailey’s family gathered at the scene of the crash for a candlelight vigil where they prayed for truth.