INDIANAPOLIS — Gun violence, continues to impact families, law enforcement, and the community.
"Gun violence is at the top of mind for all law enforcement agencies right now," Herbert J. Stapleton, FBI Special Agent in Charge said.
The FBI says one of the state's biggest problems is keeping guns out of the hands of criminals and juveniles.
"Clearly the crimes we've seen lately for example the two police officers that were shot recently one in Elwood and Richmond. Both of the shooters were convicted felons, prohibited people. So, I think that's a demonstration that it's a huge problem here," AFT Special Agent in Charge, Daryl McCormick said.
ATF Special Agent, Daryl McCormick, says the agency is also seeing more Hoosiers across the state, transferring guns to people who cannot lawfully possess them.
The Indiana Crime Guns Task Force, which is a combination of metro police, state police, the ATF, Fishers and surrounding agencies has taken 369 guns off the street since July 2021 and arrested nearly 400 people.
The guns were entered a into a National Ballistic Database, and tested.
"Usually guns are used twice in crimes. We had guns used 20 times in some incidents. The guns tend to be traded or handed off across the city," IMPD Assistant Chief Chris Bailey said.
Deputy Chief Kendale Adams says the permitless carry law, is now hindering investigators.
"It continues to be a challenge. Obviously, with the passage of law, permit less carry that continues make it more difficult for law enforcement. It shifts the burden onto law enforcement to prove that someone is permitted," IMPD Deputy Chief, Kendale Adams said.
He says before the law passed, officers could confiscate guns from cars, homes and suspects under suspicious circumstances even if they were with someone who had a permit.
"Indiana Crime Guns Task Force was dealing with recently an individual that is prohibited from carrying a firearm that was in a house. In that house had others who weren't prohibited. So, that was an interesting place we found ourselves in," Adams said. "Individuals who should not be around firearms that are with those are authorized to carry a firearm how do we discern that? Those are the kind of nuisances that we are finding very difficult to navigate whereas before we would've been able to confiscate that gun, test that gun right away and find out if it is connected."
The task force says every gun taken off the street is a potential life saved. It says there is a lot of work still needs to be done. acknowledging there are thousands of guns still on the streets.
Law enforcement says it is still early but it will continue to keep track of the impacts this law has on gun crime, stolen guns, domestic violence, suicide and more, so it can present statistics in 2023.
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