INDIANAPOLIS, Ind.– Indianapolis Mayor Joe Hogsett and Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department (IMPD) Chief Randal Taylor addressed the public at 9 a.m. Thursday from the City-County Building after four people were killed in a shooting Wednesday night.
“It is clear that last night our city experienced an incredible tragedy, one fueled by senseless violence,” said Mayor Hogsett. “In the blink of an eye, four young lives have been lost.”
Officers were called to the 4100 block of Shady Oak Drive just after 10:30 p.m. Wednesday. They found four people had been shot inside an apartment, and all four were declared dead.
The victims include three men and one woman. They were identified Thursday afternoon:
- Marcel Wills, 20
- Braxton Ford, 21
- Kimari Hunt, 21
- Jalen Roberts, 19
IMPD Deputy Chief Chris Bailey said this shooting wasn’t a random occurrence.
“We do not believe that this was a random incident,” said Bailey. “We believe this was definitely a targeted incident.”
Hogsett expressed frustration over the incident.
“This isn’t who we are as neighbors, as brothers, as sisters, as fathers as mothers,” said Hogsett. “This is not normal. And like so many in Indianapolis, I am heartbroken to have IMPD stand once more and give a briefing on a violent night.”
“Because despite millions of dollars in taxpayer investments, policing, neighborhood anti-violence initiatives in recent years, time and time again we are confronted with the ripple effects created by a peripheral of guns, drugs and poverty in our neighborhoods,” he said. “We face a challenge that traces its path across generations and through neighborhoods but at its core, it will never be solved by government alone and it certainly will not be solved by politics.
“There are no opponents over this issue. We all want this solved, especially the families of the young people who fear violence daily.”
Chief Taylor said investigators are still looking for answers, but admitted robbery may be a motive for the violence.
“The tragedy we saw last night it doesn’t make any sense, but we’re focused on holding the accountable, the person or persons, as responsible for this,” he said. “For those that may have information in the community, we would ask you call Crime Stoppers – our homicide office – talk to a beat officer if you’re so inclined.
“There’s answers out there. There are people who know. Our detectives are dedicated to finding the people responsible for this and I know they’ll work hard.”
If you have any information on this incident to report, call Crime Stoppers at 317-262-TIPS (8477). All tips through Crime Stoppers are considered anonymous and you may be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000 if your information leads to a felony arrest. Police urge you to call even if you don’t think your information is valuable.
Indianapolis City-County Council Public Safety and Criminal Justice Committee Chairman Robinson offered the following statement:
“Like all residents of our city, I awoke this morning with a heavy heart after learning of the tragic loss of life in an apparent quadruple homicide last night. Today, my prayers are with the families and friends of those impacted by this senseless violence and with all first responders and members of law enforcement who braved the cold and ice to do their duty last night, as they always do. While we await more information about last night’s events, I want to reaffirm my commitment to work in a bipartisan way with all of my colleagues on the Council, including all members of the Public Safety and Criminal Justice committee and all other stakeholders to address the challenge of violent crime and its root causes.”
Mayor Hogsett issued this statement:
Today, our community was forced to grapple with the loss of four young people, whose lives were cut short by senseless violence. And while we pray for the families and law enforcement officers confronting this reality today, we also know that for far too many in our community it’s an ongoing reality.
That’s because despite significant investments in policing and neighborhood anti-violence initiatives in recent years, time and time again we are confronted with the ripple effects created by a proliferation of guns, drugs, and poverty in our neighborhoods.
I share the frustrations and anger of so many today, but I remain confident that through collaboration, engagement, and partnership we can take real action to stem the tide of violent crime in our community.
Correction: A previous version of this story had the incorrect name for Braxton Ford. The story has been updated with the correct name.