August 9, 2023

Faith leaders call for resignation of Indianapolis police chief

IMPD Chief Taylor and Indianapolis Mayor Joe Hogsett talk to media in April following a shooting. - (Sydney Dauphinais/WFYI)

IMPD Chief Taylor and Indianapolis Mayor Joe Hogsett talk to media in April following a shooting.

(Sydney Dauphinais/WFYI)

Faith leaders in Indianapolis Wednesday called for the resignation of the chief of the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department.

The Concerned Clergy of Indianapolis said a continued pattern of police violence spurred them to call for IMPD Chief Randal Taylor to step aside.

Concerned Clergy president Rev. David Greene, Sr. said the police shooting of 49-year-old Gary Dwayne Harrell last week emphasizes the need for change in leadership.

“Chief Taylor continues to protect police officers at the expense of creating a culture of accountability,” Greene said.

Harrell died after being shot by police following a traffic stop. Faith leaders also called attention to other Indianapolis victims of police violence, including Herman Whitfield III who died after IMPD responded to his mental health crisis.

“We call for Mayor Hogsett to convene an open search for a new chief of police with meaningful and inclusive community involvement,” Greene said.

In a statement, IMPD said Taylor has been “laser-focused” on protecting the city since his 2020 appointment. Taylor has served 30 of his 36 years in law enforcement in Indianapolis.

IMPD also pointed to programs created under Taylor’s leadership, which include the use of body cameras for all officers and the release of critical incident videos. The statement also underlined the department’s use of implicit bias and de-escalation training for officers since 2018.

In a statement, Hogsett said Taylor had his support, and cited declines in city homicides and other major crimes. He also highlighted Taylor's implementation of "many of its most important transparency and accountability measures". 

This story has been updated with comment from Indianapolis Mayor Joe Hogsett.

Contact WFYI city government and policy reporter Jill Sheridan at jsheridan@wfyi.org

Support independent journalism today. You rely on WFYI to stay informed, and we depend on you to make our work possible. Donate to power our nonprofit reporting today. Give now.

 

Related News

After uptick in officer-involved shootings, IMPD to receive Department of Justice review
New documentary from Indianapolis filmmaker explores solutions to homelessness
Indiana Civics Summit focuses on youth involvement in local politics, elections