INDIANAPOLIS — A 17-year-old male is in critical condition after he was approached by an armed suspect and shot shortly after using an ATM on Sunday.
According to the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department, officers were dispatched to the 4200 block of Lesley Avenue at around 8 p.m. Sunday on reports of a person shot. The teenager was originally said to be in stable condition and was transported to a hospital.
Police said his injuries took a turn for the worse, however, and he was last listed in critical condition.
Detectives now believe the shooting to have occurred in the area of 38th and Shadeland, which is about two miles from the location the victim was driven to.
Investigators said the 17-year-old had just finished using an ATM and got into a vehicle nearby, where he was the passenger, when an armed assailant approached.
“We don’t know specifically if there was evidence that a robbery was actually taking place,” said IMPD Lt. Shane Foley. “But we do know he just left an ATM, was in a vehicle in close proximity and was approached by the individual who was armed with a handgun.”
At some point during the encounter, police said shots were fired, hitting and critically injuring the teen.
“By all accounts this seems to be an individual who is just going about his business, going about his day and it’s a very unfortunate set of circumstances,” Foley said of the victim.
Police said investigators are speaking with witnesses, who are cooperating with the investigation, and will be looking for surveillance footage and other forensic evidence.
The shooting reportedly happened in a commercial area, so Foley encouraged any businesses to review footage they may have from surveillance cameras, and check for anything the cameras may have captured.
Police stressed the importance of community and witness support in solving crimes.
“We’ve had a lot of results of people coming forward with information, whether it be a witness, whether they have video footage, whether they heard a suspect talking about it or they heard third-hand information that a suspect might be involved,” said Foley. “That type of thing gives investigators the breadcrumbs that leads them to a suspect.”
Police hope anyone who saw anything in the area of 38th and Shadeland on Sunday evening will also come forward and assist in bringing justice to the 17-year-old and his family.
“You know, it’s frustrating at times because I remember being 17 and if I was in a situation like that, I don’t know what my life would be like,” Foley said. “It’s heartbreaking for us to see a 17-year-old in that situation who is just going about his day doing everything he can.”
If going to an ATM at night, Foley said he encourages people to find one that is well-lit and in a spot you’re familiar with. He also suggested, when possible, that you go with another person and let people know where you’re going.
“Be incredibly aware of your surroundings,” said Foley. “If you see something that doesn’t look right, leave that area. If you see an individual that is acting suspicious or just makes you feel uneasy, trust your gut and get out of the area.”
Anyone who has information about the shooting can contact IMPD or remain anonymous by calling Crime Stoppers at (317) 262-TIPS.