Pastors work to unite Latino community with police

INDIANAPOLIS - As part of a new effort to stop the wave of violence in Indianapolis, the Latino community and police have joined forces to look for answers together.

Several pastors are calling on their congregations to be proactive and help police in the neighborhoods.

Mario Mares lives near 42nd Street and Post Road -- just a couple miles away from where a man was critically injured in a stabbing at the Spanish Oaks Apartments on Monday. He said his family is his world and their well-being was weighing heavily on his mind.

"My concern is obviously my security, my kids. I try to pay more attention when they are out playing," Mares said.

Police said the stabbing victim may have died if it weren’t for citizens who stepped up to share information with police. They want that effort to happen on a more consistent basis, so they have teamed up with local pastors to address concerns unique to the culture.

"Some Latinos is scared to call police because, you know, some Latinos don't have any papers," east-side resident Laura Santiago said.

Mares said there are deeply rooted issues in his community, but he hopes for a solution so his world can stay protected.

Latino pastors from across Indiana gathered Tuesday evening to pray for officers with the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department.

Pastors said the rally was held to thank IMPD officers for their service. The pastors also prayed for their safety -- especially in the wake of the fatal shooting of Officer Perry Renn.

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