No charges against Indianapolis police officer in May fatal shooting

Downtown Indianapolis

The grand jury’s decision not to indict Dejoure Mercer, the Black officer who shot and killed Dreasjon Reed on May 6, was announced Tuesday by special prosecutor Rosemary Khoury. Reed also was Black.

Posted: Nov 10, 2020 5:42 PM

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — A grand jury has declined to indict an Indianapolis police officer who fatally shot a man in May during a foot chase after police said the 21-year-old exchanged gunfire with the officer.

The grand jury’s decision not to indict Dejoure Mercer, the Black officer who shot and killed Dreasjon Reed on May 6, was announced Tuesday by special prosecutor Rosemary Khoury. Reed also was Black.

Reed’s shooting was not recorded by any police camera because the department only began implementing a body camera program in August. But Reed livestreamed the foot chase on Facebook.

Khoury, who was appointed to oversee the investigation into Reed’s fatal shooting, had announced on Aug. 21 that she had requested that a grand jury be impaneled to handle the final stage of that investigation and consider whether an indictment should be brought against Mercer.

The Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department has said Reed was fatally shot by Mercer in an exchange of gunfire with that officer during a foot chase that followed a vehicle pursuit.

Attorneys for Reed’s family have insisted that he didn’t exchange gunfire with Mercer before the officer shot him.

Reed’s mother filed a wrongful death federal lawsuit in June against the city, its police department and four officers, including Mercer.

The Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department has said Reed was fatally shot by Mercer in an exchange of gunfire with the officer during a foot chase that followed a vehicle pursuit.

Attorneys for Reed’s family and his relatives have insisted that he didn’t exchange gunfire with Mercer before the officer shot him.

Reed’s mother filed a wrongful death federal lawsuit in June against the city, its police department and four officers, including Mercer.

A federal judge later removed the city of Indianapolis as a defendant in that lawsuit, citing past court rulings that say city agencies are protected from certain lawsuits.

The lawsuit filed by Reed’s mother, Demetree Wynn, alleges that the department failed to adequately train, screen and supervise officers, including Mercer, to prevent them from engaging in excessive or deadly force. Her complaint also names Steven Scott, another African American officer.

Scott was disciplined after he was captured on video after Reed’s shooting saying: “I think it’s going to be a closed casket, homie,” an apparent reference to a closed-casket funeral.

Khoury, who’s a deputy prosecutor in central Indiana’s Madison County, was appointed in June to investigate Reed’s fatal shooting after Marion County Prosecutor Ryan Mears sought a special prosecutor.

Mears said that Chief Randal Taylor’s role as a material witness in the case constituted “a conflict of interest” for the prosecutor’s office.

Days of protests followed Reed’s killing, which came hours before Indianapolis police officers fatally shot another Black man, 19-year-old McHale Rose, and an officer fatally struck a pregnant white woman with his car.

Days of protests followed Reed’s killing, which came hours before Indianapolis police officers fatally shot another Black man, 19-year-old McHale Rose, and an officer fatally struck a pregnant white woman with his car.

Police have said Reed and Rose both shot at officers before they were killed in separate incidents just hours apart.

In Reed’s shooting, Indianapolis police said officers, including Taylor, began pursuing Reed after they saw someone driving recklessly on Interstate 65.

Supervisors ordered an end to that pursuit because the vehicle was going nearly 90 mph, police said. An officer, Mercer, later spotted the car on a city street and chased Reed on foot before police say Reed and the officer exchanged gunfire.

According to police, Mercer first tried to use a stun gun, then shot Reed as they exchanged gunfire.

Assistant Chief Chris Bailey has said a gun found near Reed appeared to have been fired at least twice.

Reed’s mother, other relatives and the family’s attorneys have insisted that the young man also did not exchange gunfire with the officer who shot him.

They’ve said that they don’t trust the police department and believe it is trying to conceal information.

“The things that you may have heard in the news coming from anyone, just know the fabrication is real. Everything that someone has told you ... is a complete lie,” Wynn said on Aug. 5 after the Marion County coroner’s officer released Reed’s autopsy report to his family.

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 735999

Reported Deaths: 13486
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion1007151752
Lake54249977
Allen40946680
St. Joseph36335553
Hamilton35829408
Elkhart28844443
Tippecanoe22475219
Vanderburgh22367397
Porter18946311
Johnson18067381
Hendricks17317315
Clark13036192
Madison12762339
Vigo12501249
LaPorte12086215
Monroe11957172
Delaware10755187
Howard10001218
Kosciusko9466117
Hancock8373142
Bartholomew8098156
Warrick7799155
Floyd7690178
Grant7098174
Wayne7072199
Boone6745101
Morgan6611140
Dubois6166117
Marshall6111112
Cass5876105
Dearborn583178
Henry5785105
Noble565984
Jackson503773
Shelby494396
Lawrence4602120
Gibson437192
Harrison436672
DeKalb430585
Clinton428453
Montgomery425889
Whitley398739
Huntington394480
Steuben391057
Miami383968
Knox372890
Jasper372649
Putnam363760
Wabash355380
Adams342755
Ripley340770
Jefferson331881
White317754
Daviess298399
Wells292081
Decatur285992
Fayette282162
Greene280585
Posey272034
LaGrange268970
Scott267554
Clay261347
Washington242132
Randolph242081
Spencer232931
Jennings230949
Starke219354
Fountain213946
Sullivan212242
Owen203356
Jay197830
Fulton196040
Carroll190420
Orange184754
Perry184637
Rush174025
Vermillion170044
Franklin168535
Tipton163445
Parke146716
Pike135634
Blackford135132
Pulaski117445
Newton108934
Brown102641
Crawford101415
Benton99014
Martin89515
Warren82615
Switzerland7948
Union71410
Ohio57111
Unassigned0417

Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 1091623

Reported Deaths: 19528
CountyCasesDeaths
Franklin1268061406
Cuyahoga1132982134
Hamilton804211211
Montgomery518231015
Summit47606955
Lucas42618792
Butler38548585
Stark32661909
Lorain25199486
Warren24390300
Mahoning21795588
Lake20846371
Clermont19880240
Delaware18608133
Licking16488212
Fairfield16327200
Trumbull16196468
Medina15379266
Greene15143244
Clark14096299
Wood13168189
Portage12966206
Allen11740232
Richland11433199
Miami10713220
Wayne8923214
Columbiana8881229
Muskingum8831133
Pickaway8596121
Marion8561136
Tuscarawas8509245
Erie7958155
Hancock6944128
Ashtabula6904172
Ross6876156
Geauga6741148
Scioto6444102
Belmont5978168
Union575448
Lawrence5590102
Jefferson5583151
Huron5462120
Sandusky5380122
Darke5374126
Seneca5311122
Washington5228109
Athens520858
Auglaize494986
Mercer481585
Shelby470293
Knox4513110
Madison439363
Putnam4301101
Ashland426590
Fulton426469
Defiance424697
Crawford3993107
Brown397557
Logan383276
Preble381398
Clinton374163
Ottawa369081
Highland356862
Williams343475
Champaign335358
Guernsey317653
Jackson314152
Perry295950
Morrow287239
Fayette283550
Hardin271964
Henry270366
Coshocton266157
Holmes2625101
Van Wert244263
Adams240053
Pike238634
Gallia236749
Wyandot232155
Hocking216462
Carroll192448
Paulding174340
Meigs145540
Noble134137
Monroe132542
Harrison109637
Morgan108823
Vinton84915
Unassigned02
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Tuesday will be a mostly cloudy and warm day with the chance of a few afternoon thundershowers.
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