Nora hosts community conversation on crime, violence

INDIANAPOLIS - The Nora Community Council hosted a public forum with three of the city’s top leaders Thursday night.

Concerned citizens were looking for answers about crime and how to stop it. Public safety leaders didn’t hold back or paint a pretty picture.

"Should Nora worry about guns and drugs? The answer is yes," Marion County Prosecutor Terry Curry said.

"This year your police department is confiscating more heroin than ever before," Public Safety Director Troy Riggs said.

"We have some Bloods and Crips that are here now from California," Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department Lt. Michael Elder said.

The common theme throughout the discussion was social issues driving crime on the streets.

"We know most of our homicide suspects, and most of our homicide victims have criminal pasts. Ninety-two percent suspects, 83 percent victims. We also know most of them came from broken homes. So we sat down and talked to these mothers, and we were shocked by what we heard. Many of the mothers we were dealing with --16 years of age," Riggs said.

Residents filled almost every seat and asked tough questions.

"If you suspect drug activity in a house in the neighborhood, but have no proof, what should you do as a citizen?" one neighbor asked.

"Be a nosey neighbor. And so I would take it a step further if you see anything going on in your neighborhood whether you think it's drug activity or anything suspicious or out of place don't hesitate to contact our office or contact the police department," Curry said.

Many said they were simply looking for some rationale in the increase of crime across the Circle City. Some had their own theories on what will help.

"We're going to have to change the family culture or lack of family culture," one resident said.

The biggest reaction came when the crowd stood and cheered when officials said the city needs to hire at least 100 new police officers.

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