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Community leaders trying to help stop the violence in Indy

Posted at 8:50 PM, Jun 22, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-22 20:50:52-04

INDIANAPOLIS — Several community leaders are coming together after another violent weekend in Indianapolis.

The Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department is investigating two more homicides and several other shootings. The city is on pace to have a record-breaking year when it comes to homicides. Faith leaders are stepping up in an effort to stop that from happening.

Several faith-based leaders said they are fed up with the amount of violence in Indianapolis and are now working together to create a plan of action.

It's spurred by images of flashing lights, police tape and another life lost. It's a scene that keeps playing out in Indianapolis over and over again.

"We are at a crisis. This is a crisis," Pastor Terry Webster Sr. said.

Webster is one of the faith-based leaders working for change. It's a topic that hits close to home.

"I, too, have lost two family members to violence years ago and it's traumatizing," Webster said.

So now he and several others are trying to figure out what else community groups and churches can do.

"No amount of legislation by itself will help it is going to take all of us parents working together to fix it

"No amount of legislation by itself can fix it. It's going to take all of us to fix it," Webster said. "It's going to take parents working together with communities, young parents, middle-aged parents. It's going to take all of us to stem this tide."

The group is also coming up with recommendations for city leaders. They plan to release those next week.

A spokesperson for the mayor's office said they were not aware of the meeting but said the city plans to spend about $4 million on neighborhood-level resources, violence prevention grants and investments in traditional public safety operations this year.

Still some say with homicide numbers where they are there is more to be done.

"That's a tipping point, that's a hurting point that is an emergency stress line," Webster said.

Webster is hoping these meetings and recommendations help prevent more scenes of violence across the city.

IMPD Chief Randal Taylor issued the following statement:

The Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department has always been open to the assistance of our neighborhood community leaders. As we move forward, we continue to work with local clergy and community members to identify problems and ways we can address them. Their input and assistance is always appreciated. We all need to work together, sharing information to keep our community safe.