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Deputy Chief James Waters: 1968-2017

Posted at 12:06 PM, Aug 01, 2017

INDIANAPOLIS -- Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department Chief James Waters died Thursday from injuries sustained in a crash.

Waters died around 2:20 p.m. Thursday at IU Health Methodist Hospital.

He served IMPD for nearly 30 years, first as a civilian employee and then as a sworn officer. Waters was appointed Deputy Chief of Investigations in Jan. 2017 by Chief Bryan Roach.

Waters had slowed on Interstate 70 around 1 p.m. Sunday when a semi struck the back of his unmarked cruiser.

According to Indiana State Police Investigators, Waters may have stopped or slowed down for wood debris in the road.

PREVIOUS | IMPD Deputy Chief James Waters dies after being critically injured in crash involving semi

The driver of the semi said Waters' vehicle suddenly slowed down, almost to a complete stop, according to a crash report. The driver said he didn't have enough time or room to stop before he rear ended Water's vehicle, causing it to travel off the roadway.

Waters was taken to IU Methodist Hospital with life-threatening injuries and remained in critical condition until he was taken off life support on Thursday.

Waters' visitation takes place Tuesday and his funeral will be Wednesday at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.

Read Waters' full obituary below: 

James E. "Jim" Waters

November 10, 1968 - July 27, 2017

Deputy Chief James E. “Jim” Waters entered this world on November 10, 1968 at I.U. Methodist Hospital, where he ironically also took his last breath. Jim entered the gates of Heaven on July 27, 2017 at the age of 48, leaving many broken hearts here on earth.

Jim met his wife Sherry at the age of 17 and married when they were 20 years old. They had two amazing children, Ashley Waters-Biddy and James Waters III. Ashley married Jonathan Biddy and have a beautiful daughter named Braelynn and another little girl on the way. Braelynn lovingly refers to her grandpa as “Po-Po”.

Jim is also survived by his mother, Edith Skaggs (Kenny) and father, James Waters Sr. (Becky). He is also leaving behind his faithful brother Tim. Jim is preceded in death by his brother Mitch. Jim graduated from Bethesda High School in 1987 and continued on to IUPUI as he worked for the Indianapolis Police in a civilian capacity. In 1990, Jim began his dream of becoming an Indianapolis Police Officer, embarking on a career that would change lives and make the City of Indianapolis a better place. Jim’s goal was to improve the quality of life for those he served. Jim grew throughout his career and held many positions with the most recent being East District Commander, Assistant Chief and Deputy Chief of Investigations.

Jim loved his family, he loved the Lord, and he loved those he served. Jim was a member of Crosspointe Baptist Church. He enjoyed listening to Elvis, flying airplanes, riding horses, camping, playing cards and basketball with his son.

A visitation is scheduled for Tuesday, August 1, 2017 from 3-8 p.m., at Crown Hill Funeral Home. A Celebration of Life Service will be held at Bankers Life Fieldhouse, 125 S. Pennsylvania St, Indianapolis, IN 46204, on Wednesday, August 2, 2017 at 11:00 a.m. Burial to immediately follow at Crown Hill Cemetery.

Memorial contributions can be made to Deputy Chief James E. Waters, Children’s Education Foundation c/o Indianapolis Police Foundation, 1525 S. Shelby St, Indianapolis, IN 46203 or online at