INDIANAPOLIS–2021 is another record-breaking year for violence in Indianapolis, but that isn’t stopping police and faith leaders from trying to get a handle on it.
On Tuesday, they got together for a breakfast at Christ Temple Apostolic Faith to start a marketing campaign called “Peace in the Streets.” They believe this is an effective tool that worked in the past.
Olgen Williams, former deputy mayor of Indianapolis, says the campaign is about asking people to do three basic things.
“Think peace, talk peace, and live peace. Just like people pay millions of dollars for a Super Bowl commercial, they put it before you enough, you buy that spaghetti, that hamburger, that Pepsi, because you see it often. We feel like if people see this message often enough, they’ll begin to think about the consequences of their life,” said Williams.
Kendall Wyatt, president of the Young Lions Action Network, calls it a rallying cry.
“Our community is facing civic cardiac arrest. Some of the problems with food deserts, the problem with education in our city, the problems with police brutality at times–all of those issues are cancers, but right now we are having a heart attack,” said Wyatt.
Marion County Prosecutor Ryan Mears, Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Chief Randal Taylor, and Indiana State Police Superintendent Doug Carter attended the breakfast.
“Why can’t we talk about the number of young black males that have been killed in this city? It’s not okay. They have moms, dads, families, and friends. We as community leaders have got to recognize that now’s our time,” said Carter.
The Interdenominational Ministerial Alliance of Greater Indianapolis is asking people around Indianapolis to repeat the phrase, “Peace in the Streets,” to inspire change. They have also made signs that say “Peace in the Streets.”
A man was killed in a shooting that happened Tuesday night on Indy’s northeast side. IMPD was called on a report about a person shot in Gardner Park, just west of Shadeland Avenue. He was pronounced dead at the scene.
The man who died in that shooting has been identified as 18-year-old Javion Rhodes. Police are searching for suspects in that shooting.
The city of Indianapolis has 244 homicides in 2021.