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: 661673

Reported Deaths: 12573
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion906391639
Lake48389876
Allen35806635
Hamilton32056396
St. Joseph29947512
Elkhart25376414
Vanderburgh21245378
Tippecanoe20000201
Johnson16336359
Porter15957270
Hendricks15813300
Clark11946181
Madison11741316
Vigo11595229
Monroe10328161
Delaware9836179
LaPorte9761196
Howard9055197
Kosciusko8561109
Bartholomew7448147
Warrick7412150
Hancock7404131
Floyd7200169
Wayne6631191
Grant6424157
Morgan6084125
Boone608288
Dubois5903111
Dearborn547067
Cass544399
Marshall5423104
Henry542093
Noble509078
Jackson464566
Shelby460290
Lawrence4180112
Gibson401281
Harrison399663
Clinton395453
Montgomery386783
DeKalb385178
Knox357285
Miami357263
Whitley349136
Huntington343976
Steuben338155
Wabash331176
Putnam329759
Ripley327061
Adams323149
Jasper315943
White297352
Jefferson294873
Daviess285396
Fayette271556
Decatur270888
Greene261280
Posey260831
Wells258274
Scott250350
Clay241044
LaGrange240870
Randolph225576
Spencer217130
Jennings215044
Washington211027
Sullivan203239
Fountain201442
Starke188051
Owen182153
Fulton178237
Jay177728
Carroll176518
Perry173235
Orange171250
Rush164722
Vermillion160442
Franklin159435
Tipton146341
Parke139216
Pike127632
Blackford120627
Pulaski106444
Newton96531
Brown94939
Benton91913
Crawford90613
Martin80114
Warren75814
Switzerland7537
Union67110
Ohio53311
Unassigned0431

Ohio Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 967422

Reported Deaths: 17297
CountyCasesDeaths
Franklin1118511208
Cuyahoga954841746
Hamilton73202970
Montgomery47226889
Summit40110957
Butler35435471
Lucas35217765
Stark29301840
Warren22361276
Lorain21952389
Mahoning19402543
Lake18358305
Clermont18327211
Delaware16415135
Licking14939200
Fairfield14491159
Trumbull14283462
Greene13548213
Medina13347219
Clark12223336
Wood11492193
Portage10982160
Allen10762235
Richland10250206
Miami10006190
Muskingum8153130
Columbiana8103182
Pickaway8033101
Tuscarawas8016236
Marion7979137
Wayne7848219
Erie6858184
Ross6123136
Geauga6051128
Hancock5979112
Ashtabula5937145
Scioto5920104
Lawrence523174
Union511252
Darke5025124
Belmont490989
Huron4781117
Jefferson4781108
Sandusky475996
Seneca4652103
Athens463133
Washington460587
Mercer4581101
Auglaize455099
Shelby440769
Knox401186
Putnam3984101
Madison391447
Ashland378495
Fulton377964
Defiance3711102
Brown369042
Crawford356696
Logan353259
Preble352571
Clinton339964
Highland327356
Ottawa322767
Williams301878
Jackson289256
Champaign285846
Guernsey285834
Fayette267844
Perry267543
Morrow259125
Henry245565
Hardin243957
Holmes2430104
Coshocton234547
Van Wert228849
Gallia221346
Adams215532
Pike214928
Wyandot209153
Hocking193549
Carroll180328
Paulding159723
Meigs134837
Noble128542
Monroe116136
Morgan100534
Harrison100432
Vinton76615
Unassigned00
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