Suspect in officer's fatal shooting in court

INDIANAPOLIS - The man accused of killing an Indianapolis police officer in an alley shootout appeared in court for the first time Tuesday, where a not guilty plea was entered on his behalf.

Major Davis II, 25, faces one count of murder in the shooting death of IMPD Officer Perry Renn on July 5 .

The Marion County prosecutor is also seeking a sentence enhancement for use of a gun that resulted in death.

The prosecutor’s office has yet to determine whether it will seek the death penalty or life in prison without parole.
 
"This will not be a quick or easy process," Marion County Deputy Prosecutor Denise Robinson said.
 
The death penalty is commonly sought in cases where an officer has died, according to Richard Dieter, executive director of the nonprofit Death Penalty Information Center, which advocates for the end of capital punishment.
 
The decision about the death penalty will likely be made by Sept. 1. Davis is expected back in court on Sept. 3.
 
After the initial exchange of gunfire with Officer Renn, Davis was thought to be dead, but was revived by first responders.
 
The Marion County Sheriff’s Department confirmed Monday that Davis was moved from Eskenazi Health to the Marion County Jail on Friday night. Details about Davis' injuries have not been released.
 
Davis was in a wheelchair in court Tuesday.
 
 
About 20 police officers lined up around the perimeter of the standing room-only audience in the courtroom.
 
"Law enforcement's a big family, and we're going to continue to wrap our arms around the Renn family until the conclusion of this case," said IMPD Lt. Chris Bailey. "It's important that they know we support them and that we're there to support them throughout this whole thing."
 
Some officers in the courtroom didn't know Officer Renn well but felt compelled to attend to show their support.
 
"He's one of my brothers, so I wanted to be there for him," said Officer Mark Decker, who said he did not personally know Officer Renn.
 
The last time prosecutors in Marion County sought or obtained the death penalty came in the separate deaths of two police officers.

In 2011, prosecutors sought the death penalty against Thomas Hardy in the killing of Indianapolis police Officer David Moore, but Hardy later pleaded guilty in return to a sentence of life without parole. In 2002, Benjamin Donnie Ritchie was sentenced to death in the slaying of Beech Grove Police Officer William Toney; Ritchie remains on Indiana's Death Row.

Davis' public defender, David Shircliff, did not return phone calls seeking comment.

 

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