Man killed in shooting on Indianapolis northwest side; city's 100th homicide of 2015


Indianapolis has recorded its 100th homicide of the year.

The latest killing came late Wednesday morning in the 1900 block of Centennial Street on the city's northwest side. It occurred near one of the zones the Indianapolis Metro Police Department has identified as a crime hot spot.

The city's 100th homicide of 2015 happened in broad daylight - and it was followed by another, apparently unconnected homicide hours later on Salem St.

Police tell us the victim in the Centennial St. shooting went to the door before noon. There was one gunshot, and the man died at the scene. 

Family members tell Eyewitness News the victim is Dennis Vaughn.

Officers believe that victim was targeted because there were no signs of forced entry at the door. Police think the victim and suspects likely knew each other.  Two sisters were home at the time and heard the gun go off. 

Police say with 100 homicides, they know there are trends, and connections between the people committing these crimes. 

"When you have these type of people in a well-populated area, a very popular street, who are brazen enough to take the life of someone else, those are what we would call a menace to society. And those are the individuals that we need to get off the street," said Sgt. Kendale Adams, IMPD.

"It's just devastating. Too many people are getting killed in this city. It don't make sense. What more can we do to solve the homicides? Police doing the best they can, the clergy doing the best they can, we've got to pull it together," said Jerry Ingram, neighbor.

Police have limited suspect information to go on right now, although witnesses did see two suspects leaving the area after the shooting. They also believe someone in the neighborhood saw what happened.

While IMPD has vague description of the gunman's getaway vehicle, they aren't yet ready to release that information.

It was not only a tough day for this neighborhood, but also for the clergy, community leaders and people who work to fight violent crime.

It's ironic timing for one pastor's efforts to stop the violence. Pastor John Giron, Jr. started a "tent crusade" a month ago to draw attention and support to the city's crime problems. He's collected hundreds of signatures from neighbors, educators, lawmakers and other community members at his tent on the corner of 30th and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

On Thursday at 10:00 am, campaign organizers and supporters will host a press conference to lay out the closing events scheduled this weekend and solicit the participation of community members to include a massive unity circle of prayer during the closeout rally this Sunday, October 4, 2015 at 3:00 p.m. 

If you have any information about this incident, call Crime Stoppers at 262-TIPS.

IMPD Chief Rick Hite issued the following statement Wednesday night about the 2015 murders in Indianapolis:

"One homicide is one too many. We grieve for all 101 murder victims and their families who have been tragically impacted by these senseless acts of violence. As we look at the circumstances surrounding many of these incidents, especially recently, it is apparent we are seeing more instances where family disagreements and other family issues are leading to these fatal shootings, including assaults against children in our community.

Now, more than ever, we must continue to work together as a community to tackle the underlying factors that lead to these violent acts. Some of this work has already begun as evidenced by the relentless pursuit of identifying and investigating individuals involved in the drug trade and the drug cartel and bringing them to justice. More than $7 million in cash, weapons and drugs have been seized with the assistance of our local, state and federal partners. I have also been encouraged to see the continued support of ministers and members of our community stepping out of their churches and homes to say 'Enough is enough.'
As always, regardless of the statistical total, this is the type of crime IMPD does not and will not tolerate. We will investigate these crimes until those responsible have been identified and arrested. That is our duty, responsibility, and promise to all impacted by these crimes."

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