NewsPublic Affairs / October 29, 2015

Mayoral Candidates Hold Dueling Press Conferences Over Public Safety

The two candidates for Indianapolis mayor held dueling press conferences Thursday to discuss public safety. Each stood in front of a different restaurant that was recently robbed at gunpoint.Joe Hogsett, Chuck Brewer, Indianapolis, Indianapolis mayoral race, Election 20152015-10-29T00:00:00-04:00
Mayoral Candidates Hold Dueling Press Conferences Over Public Safety

Democratic candidate for Indianapolis mayor Joe Hogsett, left, looks on at Rick Snyder, president of the Indianapolis police union, during a press conference Thursday.

Ryan Delaney/WFYI

INDIANAPOLIS -- The two candidates for Indianapolis mayor held dueling press conferences Thursday to discuss public safety, each standing in front of a different restaurant that was recently robbed at gunpoint.

Republican Chuck Brewer spoke in front of Papa Roux, on the Far Eastside. That restaurant was recently victimized by an armed robber, prompting its owner to offer discounts to customers with firearm permits.

Brewer called for tougher penalties for those who carry out gun crimes. 

"The people who gun down our sons and daughters on the streets of our neighborhoods need to be locked up for a long time," he said, but added that first-time offenders need more assistance so they don't return to prison.

A former U.S. Marine, Brewer says his opponent Joe Hogsett’s experience as a federal prosecutor does not translate to public safety experience. 

"He makes decisions behind a desk. I am a strong and proven combat leader," Brewer said. "I operate on the front lines."

(Read more: Hogsett and Brewer's public safety platforms head-to-head.)

Hogsett countered those remarks an hour later when he held a press conference along North College Ave. in front of Binkley's, another eatery recently robbed while customers were present. He says as a U.S. Attorney, he stared down drug cartels and gang leaders.

"That’s real, hands on experience you only get if you stand in that position," said Hogsett. "If he believes that the U.S. Attorney sits behind a desk every day, he must not know much about what the U.S. Attorney does."

The Indianapolis police union, FOP Lodge 86, has endorsed Hogsett and his public safety platform. Both candidates are calling for the hiring of 150 additional IMPD officers.

FOP 86 president Rick Snyder says many cities the size of Indianapolis have larger police forces. IMPD is "woefully understaffed," Snyder said.

 

 

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