YOUR LIFE MATTERS WEEK – AFTERNOONS WITH AMOS. For the past two months Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Chief Rick Hite and Indianapolis/Marion County Public Safety Director Troy Riggs have been and the command staffs of the IMPD have been meeting with a wide range of community and neighborhood groups and holding meetings on all sides of town in Community Conversations about the crime and violence that’s plaguing Indianapolis this year., As part of YOUR LIFE MATTERS WEEK, Chief Hite and Director Riggs appeared on Afternoons with Amos to hear from the community on their views and concerns on crime, violence and solutions., There were lots of issues covered in the two hour Community Conversation. (Sadly during the Community Conversation came word that there’s been a shotting with at least one fatality with a second person dying later that afternoon). Everything from what is police doing about removing obvious “drug houses” and open air drug air drug selling in Black neighborhoods. Listeners asked about a lack of enforcement of speed limit and traffic laws, including one listener that complained about police who break speeding laws while not responding to emergencies. Chief Hite and Director Riggs talked about the crime data for 2013 and 2014 which shows that crime is down in eery category EXCEPT for homicides. They tried to make the case that crime is decreasing. They said they continue to plan to take tougher attitudes towards repeat offenders and that just a small percentage of people are committing the crimes. In response to several questions on recruitment of new police officers, Chief Hite and Director Riggs said that the latest class of IMPD recruits was 25% Black and over 10% Hispanic, making more than a third of the recruits non-white. Riggs said that he was committed to aggressively recruit and find the best officers and at the same time try to make the IMPD recruit classes reflect more the racial makeup of the city/county. Given that less than one-sixth of homicide victims and suspects and less than one-sixth of all non fatal shootings in the city are committed by individuals under age 18 why the perception among many that teens and committing the bulk of violent crime in the city. Both Riggs and Hite agrees that under 18 persons aren’t the problem, but they’re trying to put in place plans strategies to turn teens away from a life of crime before they turn 18. In the second half of the Community Conversation, Chief Hite and Director Riggs were joined by Steven DuBois of Crimestoppers and Kelly McBride of the Domestic Violence Network. DuBois explained Crimestoppers procedures which includes their staff doesn’t ask for the names of individuals who report tips. They ask tipsters to select a “code word” which the tipster uses to check back during the year to see if the tip has been acted upon. DuBois revealed that Crimestoppers operates in every state and several foreign countries. They pride themselves on their confidentiality and in protecting the privacy of those who provide information. Kelly McBride talked about the rise in domestic violence cases in Indianapolis. African-Americans are nearly half of the domestic violence victims and perpetrators in Indianapolis and its a growing problem. Click the Media Player to Hear Afternoons with Amos Community Conversation on Crime and Violence With IMPD Chief Hite and Public Safety Director Troy Riggs. ©2014 WTLC/Radio One.
Part 1 Runs 54 Minutes – Part 2 Runs 39 Minutes –