Listen Live

(INDIANAPOLIS) – The Marion County sheriff is suing to get prospective deputies into the state training academy.

The sheriff’s department runs its own training academy, which has earned national accreditation. But the Indiana General Assembly unanimously passed a new police reform law this year which includes new training requirements, including de-escalation training. Sheriff Kerry Forestal applauds the law, and argues it’s important for Marion County deputies to get the same curriculum as every other county. He says the Law Enforcement Academy turned him down last month after eight months of discussions.

Indy’s combined city-county government means the sheriff’s department is limited to duties like courtroom security and running the jail. Forestal says the Indiana Law Enforcement Training Board questioned why deputies need to attend the state academy if they don’t go out on patrols. Forestal argues that shouldn’t matter. Forestal served as U.S. marshal before being elected sheriff, and contends no one would suggest his agency wasn’t a police agency, even though marshals don’t patrol either. And he says the state academy has opened its doors to hospital and school police officers.

The Law Enforcement Academy declined comment on the suit.