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Police meet with clergy after recent violence

Posted at 4:48 PM, Apr 20, 2016

INDIANAPOLIS – After a violent weekend with six homicides, Indy's top cop met with local clergy members to try to bring calm to the streets.

It’s a complicated problem with no easy answer.

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Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department (IMPD) Chief Troy Riggs met with more than a dozen local members of churches.

Riggs dove into details and numbers on homicides and shootings in the city. One trend he touched on are the police shootings.

Data show 55 police shootings in the city since 2013. That’s a number Riggs says is too high, and IMPD is looking into.

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Riggs touched on the percentage of black murder victims. It’s a number that’s increasing every year. This year, 28 of 35 murder victims were black.

The chief also shared numbers showing a rise in the number of cases in which someone shoots at officers. There were more than 25 such incidents last year.

In an effort to avoid yet another deadly summer, Chief Riggs is calling on local pastors to become a bigger part of the solution.

“I'm going to ask them to be a part of a clergy response team,” Chief Riggs said. “So that when we're in the summer and we have an issue in a neighborhood and we have some young people that are a little upset, that they can be that buffer to help us restore peace.”

Riggs also talked about efforts to make IMPD more diverse; the latest class of recruits was 11-percent black.

He says more needs to be done to address all these issues.

Watch our video in the player above for more.