March 26, 2021

IMPD Community Meeting Focuses On Investigation

IMPD forensic presentation. (Jill Sheridan WFYI)

IMPD forensic presentation. (Jill Sheridan WFYI)

Local law enforcement and other responding officials held an online meeting Thursday about how they conduct homicide investigations. It was part of a series of community conversations about policing.

Indianapolis continues to experience a high number of homicides after a record 245 killings in 2020. Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department officers used the online event to explain how they respond after a homicide or violent crime.

Detective Gary Smith said time is critical after a crime.

“The integrity of a scene is of the utmost importance to us,” Smith said.

IMPD currently has 28 homicide detectives.

The presentation explained how the IMPD chaplain, forensics and the prosecutor's office work together after a crime is committed. One common theme was the importance of community involvement.

Daniel Cicchini, deputy prosecutor with the Marion County Prosecutor’s Office said eyewitness testimony is often critical.

“It is a rare case that we are able to pursue a murder charge without the assistance of members of the community,” Chicchini said.

Lisa Brown, Supervisor with IMPD’s Victim Assistance Unit, said creating a connection with victims is one of her most important duties.

“Introducing families to other families who are walking down a very dark path… there is power in that,” Brown said.

The event included a question-and-answer portion from the community. Representatives responded to questions about privacy, tips and unsolved crimes.

The series is meant to provide community transparency about police processes.

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