INDIANAPOLIS – Fourth of July weekend started off on a violent note with four people killed and three others injured in several shootings across Indianapolis, all of which happened within 24 hours.
“This is supposed to be a happy, very festive weekend. This is a celebration of our country, this is a celebration of families reuniting again,” said Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department Public Information Officer Genae Cook. “People are taking a lot of advantage of this weekend as a fresh start to what we endured during 2020.”
Lieutenant Shane Foley, a public information officer with IMPD, added, “In the past two months our homicide numbers are down in the city of Indianapolis. While we’ve had an unfortunate weekend so far, we’re hoping the trend for the past two months will continue.”
Officers with IMPD responded to the first shooting Friday, just before 5 p.m. in the area of 38th and Post Road.
IMPD said when officers arrived, they discovered two people who had been shot. The victims, both identified as 22-year-old women, were transported the hospital. One of the victims died as a result of her injuries, while the other was transported with serious injuries.
The Marion County Coroner’s Office identified the deceased as 22-year-old Ariana Holston and confirmed she was pregnant.
About two hours later, IMPD responded to three shooting scenes within 30 minutes.
Just after 7 p.m., officers responded to the 1800 block of North Berwick Avenue for a report of a person shot. IMPD said a man was transported to the hospital with serious injuries. There have not been any updates on his condition.
About 15 minutes later, officers responded to the area of East 30th Street and North Sherman Drive for a report of a person who had been shot. According to IMPD, the victim was transported to the hospital and later died. The coroner’s office identified him as 34-year-old Kyle Scott-Neville.
Minutes later around 7:25 p.m., police responded to the Castleton Square Mall, where a shooting took place. A scene was located inside the south entrance of the mall, but police said the victim in the shooting had fled the scene prior and was located at an area hospital with non-life threatening injuries.
The total of four shootings on Friday left two people dead and three others injured. On Saturday, the violence continued when two people were killed in separate shootings.
Just after 10:30 a.m. Saturday, IMPD and the Indianapolis Fire Department responded to the 2400 block of Fox Harbour Drive for a report of a person down. IMPD said a man with gunshot injuries was located and pronounced dead at the scene.
The coroner’s office identified the victim as 22-year-old Dennis Riley.
Several hours later, just before 5 p.m., officers responded to the 10100 block of Pineneedle Court for a report of a person shot. Officers said a man was found shot inside of an apartment. He was pronounced dead at the scene; the coroner’s office identified him as 65-year-old Michael McDowell.
On Sunday, police arrested 38-year-old Daniel “Cory” Rhodes for his alleged role in the shooting.
As of Saturday evening, there had been at least 125 homicides in the city of Indianapolis since the start of the year.
Adrian Wingo, who lives near the site of Saturday afternoon’s homicide, said he is sick of the violence and believes people are becoming numb to the deadly shootings.
“It’s like nowhere is safe. Nowhere is safe,” he said. “It’s getting sad because it’s like, it’s a repeating cycle. We’re starting to get used to seeing this and stuff. It’s like you don’t know where to turn to. Where are you supposed to even go to raise your kids?”
IMPD wants to remind people that actions have consequences that could change the lives of countless people forever.
Cook said people need to walk away from a situation if they find themselves getting aggravated, rather than resorting to a deadly weapon to settle a conflict. They also want to remind the community to keep an eye out for others.
“We’re asking everybody to watch out for each other. If you see something that’s about to happen or if you see something that may happen, look for a way to diffuse the situation,” said Cook. “It’s important that if you see an incident that is maybe boiling, you know, call the police. We’re not going to stop you from calling the police. Reach out to us, let us come de-escalate a situation before some type of tragedy happens or before something gets worse.”
Cook said the community has to work together to help hold those responsible for these shootings accountable.
“It affects everybody in the community.
“Officers are only human. We are only as good as the information in which we’re given, we are only as good as the training that we’re given, so therefore as a community, we need you to step up,” said Cook. “We need everyone to come forward with the information that they have.”
Anyone with information on any of these incidents is asked to call Crime Stoppers of Central Indiana at 317-262-8477.