Bisard Discovery Shakes Hoosiers' Trust In Police Dept.

IMPD Image Marred By Evidence Mishandling

Many Indianapolis residents are questioning their faith and reliance on public safety officials after details of evidence mishandling were released in relation to the investigation of a 2010 crash involving a police officer in which one person was killed and two more were injured.

Police said Officer David Bisard was on duty when he struck motorcyclists stopped at a red light on Aug. 6, 2010, killing Eric Wells and injuring Kurt Weekly and Mary Mills.

Indianapolis Police Chief Paul Ciesielski resigned from his position after it was discovered that a second vial of blood drawn shortly after the crash was mishandled by police, city officials said Tuesday.

Mayor Greg Ballard and Public Safety Director Frank Straub said during a news conference that the vial had been mishandled in the police property room and that the FBI was being brought in to investigate possible criminal intent.

Some Hoosiers said they would continue to support the IMPD, but others said that city leaders would have to work hard to restore their trust.

“I find it hard to trust them when stuff like that goes on. It gives (police) a very shady image. I mean, I’m glad they're trying to clean themselves up, but they have a long way to go from there,” resident Aaron Fletcher said.

Ballard and Straub said there have been perpetual problems within the department.

Other Hoosiers said they’ve experienced a few of the department's shortfalls firsthand.

“My apartment got broken into, and we all know who did it. (The police) still to this day have not called me back on anything. I’ve left a message with the chief of police," resident Megan Bravard said.

Acting Chief Rick Hite said Hoosiers shouldn't fault those officers who've been fulfilling their duty to protect and serve.

"We’re going to ask you to reach out and say ‘Thank you’ to a police officer doing a good job. We're going to catch them doing right. We’re going to exalt those people who believe in what we're trying to do, and unfortunately we have to make examples of those who don't,” Hite said.

Most Hoosiers said they believed that IMPD image could be restored and that the Bisard case could be the turning point.

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