Families of IMPD victims final attempt to meet with Prosecutor denied; threatened with arrest

On November 21, the families of IMPD’s latest victims assembled outside of the Marion County Prosecutor’s office to request a meeting with a publicly elected official, Prosecutor Ryan Mears, to discuss the process for obtaining justice for their murdered loved ones. Unsurprisingly, their persistent demands for justice have gone unheard by Prosecutor Mears again. Mears has denied the families a meeting with his office on a weekly basis since September 5. 

This week, grieving families and community organizations committed to justice were confronted by security personnel hired by the private entity that houses the Marion County Prosecutor’s office at 251 E. Ohio St. As the party waited for the Prosecutor’s Office to re-open after lunch, building security used intimidation tactics such as taking photos of the organizers and threatening that members of the party would have to “face the consequences” if they refused to leave the property until the Prosecutor’s Office reopened. (Note: the posted hours of operation are 9a-5p M-F, and yet the door has been locked the past two Tuesdays from 12-1p. This timing perfectly aligns with the advertised coordination of rallies between the IMPD victims’ families and community organizations.) 

Ultimately, the collective was told that the request to vacate the premises was for “impeding the flow” of the otherwise empty hallway. They were also denied access to the waiting area. Continuing the pattern of persistent rule changes, the families were instructed that the signs they carried–advertising their demands for justice and memorializing their murdered loved ones–would no longer be allowed on the property. 

Banished out into the cold, the assembly continued to wait for over one half hour for the Prosecutor’s Office to re-open to its constituents. At 1 pm, the families reentered the building and attempted to set a meeting with Prosecutor Mears. Upon hearing the request, the office staff removed themself from the office and called security. Security officers escalated the situation once more with racially charged language. Referring to the families waiting to set a meeting with their publicly elected official, security officers declared it a “hostage situation.” Police in the United States have a long track record of manufacturing evidence surrounding the situation to justify any actions they may feel are required up to and including racial violence. An officer quoted stated that one reason they feel comfortable lying about the facts and intensity surrounding the circumstances of a given situation is because, “There’s no fear of being caught.” For their own safety, families were forced to leave without an appointment being set. 

This is not the first time members of the Indianapolis community have run into conflict with the prosecutor’s office over a case of police violence. In 2020, a special prosecutor had to be assigned to head the investigation in the shooting case of Dreasjon Reed, who was shot and killed by an IMPD officer. In Prosecutor Mears’ own words, “one of the reasons you can request an independent prosecutor is if there’s an appearance of impropriety.” “It doesn’t have to be actual impropriety, but if there is a concern amongst those in the community or one of the individuals involved, the elected prosecutor can file a motion asking that they be removed from the case and an independent prosecutor be appointed to address any potential conflicts that may exist.” This speaks to the lack of trust held by the community for the Marion County Prosecutor’s ability and willingness to do their job.

Prosecutor Mears’ failure to do his job and prosecute the IMPD officers who have been caught on camera assaulting and murdering over 16 victims in 2023 alone is his commendation of state sanctioned murder. Let it not be understated: state violence is racial violence! Ryan Mears must be moved to prosecute these murderous killer cops or relinquish his seat and his paycheck to someone who will do the will of the people. 

The people have filed a lawsuit after they concluded that the Prosecutor will need to answer in the court of law as to why he locks his door on the community demanding action. Now, the group’s target has shifted to another reelected official who needs to act in the interest of the people. An action is set for 12 pm this upcoming Tuesday, November 28 at Mayor Hogsett’s office to demand the termination of IMPD Chief of Police, Randal Taylor, whose leadership has allowed the continued massacre of the People of Indianapolis. For updates on this ongoing struggle, subscribe to the Indianapolis Liberation Center Newsletter.