‘This is really sad for our community’: Youth organization responds after teen shot in Steak ‘n Shake drive-through

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INDIANAPOLIS – Police say that a disgruntled customer shot a teenager through a Steak ‘n Shake drive-through Thursday night. While the investigation is ongoing, police say the employees handled the situation the right way.

There’s still a bullet hole in the drive-through window on 25th and Post Road. That’s where police say, a disgruntled customer, upset about service shot at employees inside. A 17-year-old was shot in the shoulder. Thankfully, the teen will be okay. Police are working with Steak ‘n Shake to get surveillance of what happened.

This case has organizations like the Marion County Commission on Youth motivated to find a solution to the violence.

“This is really sad for our community,” said Kate Roelecke, the Early Intervention and Prevention Director for MCCOY, “How do you have difficult conversations, how do listen actively, how do you monitor your own emotions?”

Those mitigation skills are exactly what Roelecke and MCCOY are hoping to teach young people.

She believes it comes down to resources and opportunities.

“Young people who have engaged with these various systems, the juvenile legal system and the child welfare system – they are working directly with city-county councilors to talk about these issues,” said Roelecke.

MCCOY hopes those conversations will lead to safer communities. They’re working with community partners and groups like the Marion County Youth Violence Prevention Coalition and the Early Intervention Planning Council, and the Indianapolis Youth Commission.

“We’re talking about, where are the streetlights in our community, and are there dark areas where violent behavior might be more acceptable?” Roelecke added, “We’re looking at the social and the physical environment as well as the socio-economic factors that allow violence to exist.”

Police say the Steak ‘n Shake employees were walking away before the shots were fired to get away from the problem. For MCCOY the plan is to keep working so cases like this, can be prevented.

“A lot of teens, a lot of community members, and neighbors are hurting right now,” said Roelecke.

Steak ‘n Shake corporate released a statement regarding the shooting reading in part:

At Steak ‘n Shake, the safety of our customers and our employees is top priority.  Security cameras caught the incident and have been turned over to the police.  

Our thoughts and prayers are go out to the employee who was injured.  We will continue to cooperate with law enforcement officials as they conduct their investigation. 

Police don’t have any suspect information to pass along at this time. If you know anything about what happened, you’re asked to call IMPD’s aggravated assault office or Crime Stoppers of Central Indiana at (317) 262-TIPS.

Click here to learn more about MCCOY programs.

When speaking with the Marion County Commission on Youth, they mentioned FOX59’s new crime mapping project and how they’re using it to see where crime is happening, and the steps city leaders are pledging to take to solve the issue.

“If we can look at where crime is taking place and where these violent behaviors are taking place we can overlap data that we already have to probably find out that these areas are high poverty, high unemployment, lower access to food and to community resources and programs and these are the types of things that make our communities safer,” said Roelecke.

The Crime Mapping page includes resources including an interactive map that breaks down homicides – neighborhood by neighborhood.

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