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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: 1560117

Reported Deaths: 20796
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion2118112563
Lake1021301523
Allen964791027
Hamilton75541551
St. Joseph66476761
Elkhart51045634
Vanderburgh50511531
Tippecanoe45721338
Johnson39600527
Hendricks37933463
Porter35132476
Madison30330547
Clark27296331
Vigo26401347
Monroe24100249
LaPorte23921313
Howard23237381
Delaware22453370
Hancock19314220
Bartholomew18980216
Kosciusko18400204
Warrick17733216
Wayne16982303
Floyd16686257
Grant15966300
Morgan15091232
Boone13924138
Dearborn12235113
Shelby12225152
Noble12170142
Henry12027202
Dubois11696152
Marshall11625171
Jackson11111104
Cass10578143
Lawrence10529221
Huntington10523140
DeKalb10482132
Gibson10114127
Montgomery9671144
Harrison9471117
Knox9415125
Whitley902571
Steuben8934105
Putnam8542100
Miami8533135
Clinton849397
Jasper8462116
Jefferson8319127
Wabash8027140
Ripley7504117
Scott685787
Adams6829103
Daviess6825130
White638184
Greene6317112
Clay628975
Decatur6261121
Jennings619781
Wells6090121
Fayette6054122
Posey580148
LaGrange549097
Randolph5364129
Washington528071
Owen5211100
Fountain493681
Spencer467456
Sullivan462066
Fulton450993
Orange449784
Starke448887
Rush433941
Jay432564
Perry409155
Carroll394749
Franklin394650
Vermillion370762
Pike334246
Parke331239
Tipton330475
Blackford282255
Pulaski281775
Brown239856
Newton239761
Benton228921
Crawford224932
Switzerland207914
Martin196722
Warren183922
Union178119
Ohio129216
Unassigned0763

Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 2515949

Reported Deaths: 31987
CountyCasesDeaths
Franklin2719422100
Cuyahoga2606673087
Hamilton1758091756
Montgomery1177451651
Summit1089011418
Lucas935321193
Butler83907963
Stark771001431
Lorain64214809
Warren53428489
Mahoning51224930
Lake47591611
Clermont46928452
Delaware41107220
Trumbull39746790
Licking38790416
Medina38646427
Fairfield35828349
Greene34313435
Portage32429366
Clark32361453
Richland29653444
Wood29379301
Allen25875403
Miami24243408
Muskingum23564255
Columbiana23046409
Wayne22093365
Tuscarawas19637428
Marion18616235
Erie18608224
Ashtabula18569362
Scioto18159214
Ross17594260
Pickaway16419181
Hancock16115232
Geauga15511229
Lawrence15094186
Belmont14236248
Union1419584
Huron13908184
Jefferson13656261
Sandusky13268200
Athens12877107
Knox12160201
Seneca12055204
Darke11440202
Ashland11248184
Washington11152172
Auglaize10873147
Crawford10432178
Shelby10402160
Brown10094145
Highland9746151
Fulton9726154
Guernsey9683122
Defiance9567137
Logan9470147
Clinton9428132
Mercer9099112
Madison9032111
Preble8524170
Williams8305138
Putnam8069136
Champaign8040113
Ottawa7971123
Jackson7848121
Perry7514102
Coshocton7411136
Morrow729184
Fayette715992
Pike666689
Hardin6564133
Gallia638891
Adams6227127
Van Wert6065121
Henry602596
Hocking5918105
Wyandot503594
Carroll5009101
Holmes4880167
Paulding426465
Meigs400974
Monroe316468
Harrison299162
Noble296952
Morgan292748
Vinton258646
Unassigned08
Fort Wayne
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Angola
Cloudy
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Feels Like: -1°
Huntington
Partly Cloudy
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Hi: 19° Lo: -1°
Feels Like: -10°
Decatur
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Hi: 21° Lo: 2°
Feels Like: -17°
Van Wert
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Bitterly cold wind chills are expected across the region Tuesday night into Wednesday morning.
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