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Inside the plan to reduce crime in Broad Ripple

Police say monitoring surveillance cameras has led to a 100% reduction in robberies over the last 28 days and a 66.7% reduction in nonfatal shootings.

INDIANAPOLIS — Angel Santiago of The Barber Studio on Guilford Avenue in Broad Ripple said this year, he's seen an uptick in crime in the area.

"I feel like Broad Ripple had gotten a little worse and more dangerous. I feel like it's been after the pandemic, definitely," said Santiago.  

Santiago said it's also more than just late-night weekend violence.

"I used to have a bench here. I removed it. I'm tired of dealing with throw up. People getting out of the clubs and they don't control their alcohol and we have to deal with the throw-up every Monday in front of our door," said Santiago.

Jeannie Kaplan of Artifacts said some of the problems happen outside of many bars and nightclubs.

"It's out on the streets and in the parking lots," she said. "I know a lot of them are doing their part to paying for off-duty officers, and extra security and are really investing and trying their best as well too."

According to IMPD, there have been eight nonfatal shootings within the area.

"That is alarming. Typically, that area sees zero to maybe one a year, maybe one a year. Enduring eight for this small section of the city is a lot," said IMPD Cmdr. Mike Wolley.

This summer, the community and IMPD held a meeting to discuss solutions.

"We laid out what our plan was for our camera systems," said Wolley.

That included having an Intel person and an officer paired up to monitor those cameras.

"What they're able to do in real time is communicate what they are seeing and then dispatch officers without someone having to call 911, without having a citizen report what's going on. They are able to see things that are suspicious in nature and things our officers should probably take a look at and our officers are immediately dispatched to those instances," said Wolley.

Wolley said officers were able to stop things from occurring, actions that have helped lead to a significant reduction in crime.

"In the last 28 days, we've seen a 100% reduction in robberies. We've seen a 66.7% reduction in nonfatal shootings," said Wolley.

Achieved in part, he said, through a partnership between businesses, IMPD and the Broad Ripple Village Association.

"We try to do our best with bringing people together, sharing ideas and then discussing if we have grand plans, how we can try to accomplish those together," said Jordan Dillon with BRVA.

Dillon has been working closely with IMPD and city leaders.

"We're just trying to do our best to make sure we are taking what the city offers us as feedback in our area, what we can do at a small local level and then implement that together as a village," said Dillon.

It's working together as a village that business owners said can help them become a safer community.

"This area has a lot of small, independently owned businesses and we're all connected and we're all looking out for each other," said Kaplan.

Santiago hopes things will improve.

"Hopefully people will care about each other more, look out and stay safe around here," said Santiago.

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