INDIANAPOLIS — On a Friday night the surging rate of violent crime in Indianapolis is top of mind for residents on the east side. It's also top of mind for IMPD Chief Randal Taylor. The city's top cop spent the evening asking the community for solutions to slow Indy's homicide rate and the cause fueling it.
"I've got concerns about these murder numbers, it's way too high. The solution is probably going to be a little longer drawn out but we need to identify it and start making these steps to reduce those numbers," Taylor said.
Taylor asked the crowd to share their thoughts on the root cause of violence particularly among black males in Indy. 27-year-old Raymond Achille says much of violence is caused by people not knowing how to control their emotions.
"I think it's very valuable for us to be able be aware of, control and express our emotions in a healthy way and handle interpersonal relationships judiciously and empathetically," Achille said.
28-year-old Jabriel Victoria told the chief he believes much of the violence including domestic violence is fueled by influences at home.
"Just as what we're allowed to intake as kids, like even as music. I think I gave an example like y'all grew up on Marvin Gaye back in the day, how to tender, love and care for a woman. Nowadays, I mean everybody knows what we listen to. We technically don't need a woman," Victoria said.
The community conversation was not only insightful for Chief Taylor but also for audience members like Jessica Mosely who lost her child's father during a shooting in northwest Indiana. After first wondering if police understand the impact of losing a loved one to violence, she learned Chief Taylor knows that feeling first-hand following the death of his father-in-law who was killed by a 12-year-old in Fort Wayne.
"It did a lot for me, because you know sometimes, we don't ever get to hear the police side of the story. Just sometimes it appears that they're not interested, that they don't care but to able to see them and to talk to him and hear his heart about it. That put me at rest with a lot of things," Mosley said.