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IMPD launches digital series of firsthand experiences to keep Hoosiers safe

The series gives a behind-the-scenes look through the body cameras of IMPD officers.

INDIANAPOLIS — The Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department has launched a digital series showcasing firsthand experiences that officers face in order to keep Hoosiers safe. 

The series, titled "Sworn to Serve," gives a behind-the-scenes look through body cameras at the work done by IMPD officers.

The first episode details an incident that happened June 3, 2021 on the city's east side, near East 38th Street and North Franklin Road.

Officers got a call about shots fired in the area, so they checked a city camera and saw a person sitting in the street as vehicles drove by.

The first officer to get to the scene blocked oncoming traffic with his vehicle as he asked the man what he was doing. The officer asked the man to move to the sidewalk because he was blocking traffic, but the man did not comply. 

The person's face has been blurred out, as well as audio of his name and birthdate, to maintain the focus on the officers’ actions.

After nearly 10 minutes, the man agrees to get out of the street and talk with the three responding officers on the sidewalk. He asks officers to stay 12 feet away from him, which they agree to. 

A Mobile Crisis Assistance Team member and an IMPD officer offered the get the man Gatorade and food from the gas station, but the man started walking away.

Then, officers placed the man in handcuffs, believing him to be mentally ill and a danger to himself. The video explains this process is called "immediate detention" and is used when officers determine an individual requires medical attention or evaluation for their own safety or the safety of others.

The man was taken to a local hospital for evaluation without further incident.

IMPD officers have been equipped with body cameras since 2020. According to IMPD, the cameras begin recording automatically after certain triggers, such as when an officer draws a gun from its holster, begins to run, lies flat for 10 seconds, activates lights or sirens in the squad car or begins violently shaking.

IMPD said the recordings have already been instrumental in the department’s investigations and in improving IMPD’s transparency and accountability.

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