October 2021 deadliest month in Indy’s history with 34 homicides in 31 days

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INDIANAPOLIS — With 34 homicides in 31 days, October was officially the deadliest month in the history of Indianapolis.

The 34th and final homicide in October took place Sunday on Hovey street.

That broke the record for the most homicides in a calendar month which was set just a few months ago in July, when there were 33 homicides.

Starting October 1st, 34-year-old Savannah Blevins was killed in a murder-suicide inside a home on Tanza road.

Over the 31 days that followed, Indianapolis averaged one homicide every 22 hours.

That ended with 28-year-old Jalen Chatmon shot to death Sunday in the 3200 block of Hovey street.

“Yes 34 is a lot for October, but it could have been worse,” said Lauren Rodriquez.

Lauren Rodriquez is the director of the Office of Public Health and Safety admits 34 homicides in one month is disappointing, but adds Indianapolis currently employs five violence interrupters which operate separate from IMPD.

She claims those workers have prevented more than 600 acts of violence since March and with a bigger budget approved for next year the city plans to add 50 interrupters, outreach workers and life coaches.

“I’m really hopeful we’re going to have a bigger impact into 2022 to keep the number down and keep it from getting worse than it can be,” said Rodriquez.

“We all have to do something about this,” said Ron Gee.

Ron and other community leaders called for a 72 hour cease fire this past weekend.  That goal fell short with the homicide on Hovey, but Ron believes the only way to stop the growing violence is with greater community involvement.

“We all have a part in this. As long as we do our part, we’ll be alright.  It’s not a black or white thing.  This is a human being thing,” said Ron.

The violence last month actually reflected a similar trend from 2020 when October was also the deadliest month of the year with 31 homicides reported.

That’s why Lauren cautions that reversing the record breaking numbers remains a long term objective.

“We’re not going to fix this overnight,” said Rodriquez.  “It’s something that we have to be patient with.”

According to IMPD at least 25 of the 34 homicides in October remain unsolved.

So far there have been 232 total homicides in Indianapolis.  The city ended October 2020 with 202 homicides.

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