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Neighbors near Pleasant Run Trail express concerns over homeless camps, IMPD launches new reporting form

homeless camp
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Posted at 7:06 PM, Apr 02, 2024
and last updated 2024-04-02 19:06:10-04

INDIANAPOLIS — Residents near the Pleasant Run River Trail are expressing concerns about homeless camps popping up along the river.

The trail runs from Ellenberger Park to Garfield Park.

WRTV spoke with a neighbor near Iowa Street and Pleasant Run Parkway. She moved into the neighborhood in 2022.

"We knew it was an up and coming neighborhood when we moved in to begin with and we saw it further down the street and river. Around December is when we noticed the camps popping up closer to us and its been growing since then," said Morgan.

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Morgan says her biggest concern is safety. She's seen fights break out, has found syringes on the ground, and sees the trash keep piling up. She's reached out to her city-county councilor, called the Mayor's Action Line and the non-emergency police line when needed, but is frustrated with how long the process takes.

"As a tax paying citizen frustrated," said Morgan. I’m really energized by our neighborhood and a ton of people care about making the place better."

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She says on Monday, about 40 people attended the Bates-Hendricks neighborhood meeting to talk about their concerns. An IMPD park ranger was in attendance and introduced them to a new initiative. The department has launched a new form to reach the IMPD homeless unit.

"There’s a lot of community members, officers that don’t exactly know how to get a hold of us and this is just an easier way to do that," said Major Tabatha McLemore, with IMPD's Operation Support Bureau.

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McLemore says Pleasant Run is a known area for homeless camps. Through out the city they work to make sure people experiencing homelessness are on a housing list and have the right resources before moving them.

"One of the things we’ve been dealing with is we need cleaning crews in order to get to some of these camps. We work closely with the Office of Public Health and Safety and they do have a cleaning crew with them, contracts have just been finalized. We’re now going to be working with these cleaning crews to get over there and get those problems addressed," said McLemore.

A link to the new form is here.