Indianapolis to get witness protection program after City-County Council passes proposal

Posted at 1:17 PM, Jan 30, 2018
and last updated 2018-01-30 14:32:45-05

INDIANAPOLIS -- The City of Indianapolis will soon have a witness protection program. 

The City-County Council approved a $300,000 appropriation to help those who feel like they may be in danger when they know something about crime in Indianapolis.

The City-County Council unanimously passed the proposal Monday night, 9-0.

The $300,000 will come from the general county fund. This new expense will bring the projected 2018 year-end balance to 2,783,865.

Supporters of the proposal, like Kelly Hutchinson, are hoping the program could lead to more justice. Hutchinson's 25-year-old son, Phillip Brown, was gunned down on June 29, 2016 at the Blackburn Terrace Apartments.  There have been no arrests in his murder.

Police say their investigation was hampered by uncooperative witnesses.

"They need to protect witnesses? Exactly," she said. "There was a witness that could have identified your son's killer, but they didn't come forward? Exactly. That makes you sad? I'm past sad. I'm pissed. Angry. It's crazy."

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Marion County Prosecutor Terry Curry is also in favor of a witness protection program. 

"Witnesses disappear on us," Curry said. "Witnesses recant on us. Any scenario where we can increase cooperation among citizens who have information, by definition we will be able to obtain more convictions."

Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department Chief Bryan Roach said one way the money could be used is to house a witness in a hotel. 

Click here to read the City-County Council proposal. 

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