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Protests form after three deadly incidents involving Indianapolis police in less than eight hours

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Posted at 5:12 PM, May 07, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-08 12:23:35-04

INDIANAPOLIS — Unrest and anger filled the streets of Indianapolis Thursday, less than 24 hours after two deadly officer-involved shootings and a pregnant woman was struck and killed by an officer.

Residents immediately began to protest at the scene of the first officer-involved shooting, which drew national media attention. Multiple protests formed by Thursday afternoon, including two large demonstrations at police headquarters and the scene of the first incident.

Protesters continued to gather into Thursday evening throughout the city to voice their concerns, demanding answers and accountability.

"Black lives matter, they matter," one protester told RTV6 Thursday. "So many people keep dying for this, please, please, tell everyone."

PHOTOS | Protests in Indianapolis after deadly incidents involving police

Man shot and killed by police following pursuit
Dreasjon Reed, 21, was shot and killed by an Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department officer around 6:10 p.m. Wednesday near 62nd Street and Michigan Road. A pursuit was initiated by IMPD Deputy Chief Kendale Adams and Chief Randal Taylor. Both were in unmarked cars and dropped out of the pursuit after marked cars joined the chase, which follows IMPD's pursuit policy, according to IMPD.

The pursuit was eventually called off by a supervisor monitoring the chase when speeds increased, according to IMPD. A short time later, an officer saw the car and Reed jumping out and running away. Police say the officer used his taser before an exchange of gunfire between the officer and Reed.

Police say they are aware of a Facebook Live video which appears to capture the incident. Tens of thousands of people were viewing the live video after the incident.

Taylor says a gun was found at the scene near Reed's body.

PREVIOUS | Man killed in shooting with IMPD live-streamed chase, moments leading up to his death

Reed and the officer who shot him are both black, IMPD Deputy Chief Chris Bailey said at the scene Wednesday.

PREVIOUS | Man killed after shootout with IMPD on city's northwest side identified by coroner

Comments, which appeared to have been made by officers, were broadcast live on Facebook. These comments quickly made headlines on sites like TMZ and the New York Times.

A large group of people, which at one point reached at least 100, gathered near the scene.

Man dead after allegedly exchanging shots with police

Pregnant woman struck and killed by IMPD officer
Around 9:45 p.m. Wednesday, Ashlynn Lisby, 23, was struck and killed by an IMPD officer near South Harding Street and the Interstate 465 ramp. Lisby was pregnant.

The officer, Jonathon Henderson, a 22-year veteran of the department, was on his way to work at the time of the crash, according to a press release from IMPD.

PREVIOUS | Pregnant woman struck, killed by IMPD officer identified

Henderson immediately called for assistance to the scene and began rendering first aid to the victim, according to IMPD. She was rushed to Eskenazi Health in critical condition. Both the woman and her unborn child were pronounced dead at the hospital.

Investigators say they do not believe Henderson was impaired at the time of the crash.

Man killed by officers responding to burglary call
Around 1:30 a.m. Thursday, McHale Rose, 19, was shot and killed by officers in the 2200 block of Woodglen Drive, according to a press release from IMPD. Officers were called to the area on a report of a burglary in progress.

Rose began shooting at officers with a rifle when they arrived, according to the release.

Taylor said Thursday morning a preliminary investigation determined Rose may have been planning an ambush situation.

PREVIOUS | Man killed by IMPD responding to burglary call may have been planning ambush, IMPD Chief says

Taylor and members of IMPD's command staff held a press conference Thursday morning to address the recent events.

WATCH | IMPD Chief & staff provide updates on officer-involved shootings

Around noon Thursday, residents gathered at the City-County Building, where IMPD is headquarted. The protesters then started marching through the streets of downtown Indianapolis chanting things like "black lives matter," and "no justice, no peace."

Both black and white drivers stopped in their cars putting fists out the window in solidarity. pic.twitter.com/K6s3raESoV

— Cameron Ridle (@CameronRidle) May 7, 2020

Around the same time, people started to gather at 62nd Street and Michigan Road, the scene where Reed was killed.

By 1:45 p.m. Thursday, more people gathered and blocked traffic, forcing IMPD to redirect traffic in the area.

Lawmakers and community leaders released statements and reacted to the series of events around the same time as the protests were happening.

PREVIOUS | Lawmakers, community leaders react to fatal Indianapolis police shooting

Tensions were rising by 4 p.m. RTV6 reporter Megan Sanctorum saw someone throw something at police.

Video from the scene shows at least one officer spraying something at some of the protesters as they approached them. The video shows officers quickly moving back. Some officers at the scene were wearing helmets.

Just before 6 p.m., the protesters were marching on Michigan Road.

At 7 p.m. Thursday, 24 hours after the first officer-involved shooting, residents were still at the scene.

Protests have all been peaceful. #SeanReed pic.twitter.com/8mmrgOVotH

— Cameron Ridle (@CameronRidle) May 7, 2020

Protesters speak

Sean Smith, a good friend of Reed's, says he is not sure why he ran from police, but thinks the officer should've handled the situation differently.

"If an officer spotted him you know they should have used other techniques, such as commands, put your hands on the ground, those sort of things," Smith said. "There were more officers that was in that pursuit and out here and I feel like there was more manpower to subdue him and bring him to justice."

Marcus Russell says he never met Reed, but feels for his family.

"I am infuriated by this because I feel like this happened to my son or my brother, I am so steamed I couldn't sleep last night," Russell said.

You can hear more from the protesters at the gatherings below:

Protest calls for 'justice' after police shooting in Indianapolis
Protest calls for 'justice' after police shooting in Indianapolis, part 2