FOP president: ‘This is going off the rails’ as city approaches 200 homicides by October’s end

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INDIANAPOLIS — Indianapolis Fraternal Order of Police President Rick Snyder is sounding the alarm: the city will grieve 200 homicides in Indianapolis by the end of October if nothing changes.

Snyder keeps track of violent crime data collected from IMPD and media reports.

“In the first [15] days of October, we’ve had at least 50 people shot, 5-0, 8 people stabbed with 16 of those dying,” Snyder said. “What that has done is it’s brought us to having at least 188 homicides in the city in just this first [15] days of October. If we just simply have that same rate of violence continue and replicate those numbers for the next [15] days, we will have broken the level of 200 homicides before the end of October.”

Snyder said the warning to the community should be “that this is going off the rails.” Snyder and Indianapolis Ten Point President Charles Harrison have been imploring elected officials to come up with an immediate plan to stop the bleed in Indianapolis for more than a year.

Earlier this week, city leaders held a news conference to say they will continue putting millions of dollars of funding toward grassroots organizations aimed at tackling root causes of crime and violence intervention.

Snyder also noted the crime stats should not start over again on Jan. 1. He added there needs to be a short-term plan to handle the violence alongside a long term plan.

“To be fair, [elected officials] are calling for a more deliberate discussion on root causes of crime and violence, we fully agree,” Snyder said. “In fact we’ve been doing that now for about 10 years, having those discussions. What we’re saying now is you’re in the middle of a crisis, you’ve reached a tipping point and we’ve got to prevent the deaths tonight. It’s gotta be about preventing this, triaging the situation. With the triaging what you’ve got to do is you’ve got to stop the bleed first, right? We all know this from basic first aid.”

Mothers who have lost their children to gun violence are angry over the amount of people dying.

“People are getting tired, people are getting so tired of coming out with candles and putting teddy bears, and standing their crying and praying,” Kimberly Roberts said. “We don’t get tired of praying but we want to pray for something else. We want to pray for other things besides coming together, standing at an apartment building or on a street corner where our loved one has been gunned down because someone decides that they just want to shoot and kill somebody.”

Roberts’ son Jalen was killed in his apartment with three other young people on Feb. 5. Jalen’s cousin is Aaron Grice, who was killed on Dec. 26, 2018. Aaron’s mother’s pain has not eased since that day.

“I have two bad days and I have them each month,” Mary Love said. “That’s on the 26th and the 5th, 26th is the day I found my son and the 5th is the day I closed the casket on my son.”

With 188 homicides in the city this year, the mothers hope the pain they feel will change the mind of a would-be shooter.

“You may be thinking you’re getting away with it now, what you do in the dark will eventually come to light,” Roberts said.

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