INDIANAPOLIS – It might not get a spot on the sign along the road, but the newest addition to the Shadeland Station trip mall on the Northeast is now open 24/7.
“Clean restroom, clean facility, a place you can come in and get out of your car,” said Sgt. Vincent Stewart with the IMPD North District.
He’s talking about the new resource center, made specifically for IMPD officers. It’s taken over a vacant unit in the strip mall, offering any IMPD officer a place to work, eat or relax when patrolling the area. It’s especially needed during COVID 19.
“A place where officers can come and feel safe and at the same time can relax and know that they have a safe place to write their reports, grab something to eat,” said IMPD officer Jerome Harrison.
The space is filled with couches and chairs, appliances and an endless supply of snacks. All of it donated by neighbors.
“A lot of the neighbors felt like crime was on the rise in the area, and we wanted to find a way to increase the police presence in the community,” said Kris Parmelee with the neighborhood group North Shadeland Alliance.
Parmelee and the North Shadeland Alliance are hoping to bring life back to the strip mall, after a 35-year-old Ashook Kumar was shot and killed while working at the Subway Restaurant in a robbery earlier this year.
“It was really shocking,” Parmelee said of the murder. “This community like all communities has experienced property crime before, but that was really the first violent crime that had happened so close to home in a long time.”
In response, neighbors raised more than $6,000 to set up the resource center, giving officers a home base in the neighborhood.
“We deploy our bikes from here,” said Sgt. Stewart, who is part of the community relations unit. “So, we ride our bicycles from this particular office and are able to connect with the businesses and the subdivisions around here.”
A sign of support and a sign of community, neighbors are hoping the center will make their community safer, one day at a time.
“Incidents in the immediate community are definitely on the decline, and we all feel a big relief having them here,” Parmelee said.
Police are still looking for the suspects in the January shooting at the subway restaurant. If you have any information, contact Crimestoppers at 317-262-TIPS.