Hoosiers remember Sandy Hook victims

Saturday marks one year since shooting

INDIANAPOLIS - Saturday marks one year since a gunman shot and killed 26 people at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn.

A small group gathered downtown at Indianapolis City Market on Friday to remember the 26 victims of the Sandy Hook shooting.

"I hope that people don't let another year go by where we don't finish the conversation and what we are going to do about gun violence," Shannon Anderson, spokeswoman for Organizing for Action, said.

Since last December, Indiana schools have spent thousands of dollars to improve security.

Carmel school resource officer DJ Shoeff said the conversations that have taken place have led to safety improvements at Indiana schools.

"I think the opportunity we had with that is exposure. A lot more people understood what was going on not only in the State of Indiana, but across the country as it pertains to school safety," Shoeff said.

In the spring, Gov. Pence signed a $20 million grant program into law that allowed for Indiana schools to make safety improvements.

Officials with the Attorney General's office said that money has allowed 196 schools to make safety equipment upgrades and 116 schools have created or expanded school resource officer programs.

Not lost on those at Friday's service were the Indiana victims who have lost their lives to gun violence in the past year.

Elizabeth Hagedorn, 24, was among the 95 local names read and remembered.

"I hope people start taking charge. Babies are killing babies. I’ve seen 14-year-olds with guns. Unfortunately with Elizabeth, God love her, it was an innocent life taken," Elizabeth’s aunt Amelia Hagedorn said.

The state grant program is funded for two years. Legislators will discuss its renewal during the 2015 legislative session.

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