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Community members frustrated by violence after fight at Indy funeral home

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Posted at 11:25 PM, Sep 12, 2022
and last updated 2022-09-13 11:27:28-04

INDIANAPOLIS — High emotions at a funeral on Saturday created an unwanted scene that no family should have to endure after a fight took over a moment of grief.

"It seems as if there were high emotions for whatever reason for whatever side," Antonio Lipscomb said.

Lipscomb says he was attending vocational training at New Direction Church next door from Williams & Bluitt Funeral Home.

"I had seen at least 10-15 police cars," Lipscomb said.

The parking lot quickly spiraled into chaos.

"It just seems like the disregard of the human life and care for the deceased definitely wasn't distributed that day," Lipscomb said.

People started fighting inside the funeral home, sending nearly 150 people into the parking lot scrambling for safety. Witnesses told police at least one person used pepper spray.

"A lot of screaming, a lot of violent languages and violent behavior," Lipscomb said.

IMPD and the emergency response group responded to the scene. IMPD officials said it didn't take long for them to calm down the crowd.

"Williams & Bluitt is a staple in this community," Pastor Kenneth Sullivan at New Direction Church said.

This altercation comes nearly five months after a shooting at the same funeral home during another service back in April.

"We know that it's not something that they want. It's something that we don't want. We want to encourage the community to recognize that the businesses that do business in our community, we want to respect them," Sullivan said.

Sullivan said this was yet another incident that could have been avoided. He said his efforts to curb the violence are not in vain, and it does not discourage his push for change.

"We have to continue to push back the darkness and strive to make a difference in our community so that the next generation can grow up different and can have a better mindset," Sullivan said.

One person was arrested in connection to this incident for a stolen gun.

Funeral home manager Aundray Jones said this is disappointing, but they are committed to doing whatever they can to help the community curb the violence.