Violence erupts at funeral for slain teenager

Hundreds of youth escorted off property

INDIANAPOLIS - Every available North District officer was summoned to a northeast side funeral home early Tuesday afternoon to quell a mass disturbance that disrupted the funeral service of a 16-year-old fatally shot last week.

Metro police were already on hand at the funeral of James Johnson, who was gunned down last Tuesday on the playground of the Hawthorne Place apartments.

Several fights broke out in the parking lot of the Lavenia and Summers Home for Funerals, located in the 5800 block of East 38th Street.

Someone from the funeral home said they always have a number of police on hand when funerals are conducted for victims of homicide, particularly someone as young as Johnson.

Police have yet to arrest anyone for the murder.

Members of the clergy, who were also in attendance to try and keep order, said there were members of at least three gangs present.

"People are hurt. People are angry," said  Bishop Horatio Luster, with the Ten Point Coalition. "And it just escalated into something unnecessary. Differences of opinion. You had two to three different cliques here, or as they call them, gangs. Some differences of opinion, hurt, pain."

Hundreds of youth were escorted off the property and scores more were told not to go to the cemetery.

Police had to break up another fight at the cemetery.

Police made no arrests this afternoon.

Follow Jack Rinehart on Twitter: @jackrinehart6

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