Sunday, July 21, 2013

Police: Downtown Shooting Death Of 17-Year Old Not Related To Black Expo

City officials, community leaders and the media all began celebrating the fact that this year's Black Expo Summer Celebration event in downtown Indianapolis had been free of violence. In fact, very sparse crowds came downtown for an event this weekend that has been marked by so much mayhem and violence in past years, leading some to wonder why city officials allow an event to take place annually every summer which costs taxpayers dearly in added security, and which causes financial harm to downtown business owners as many paying visitors avoid the area like the plague. Fox59 News' Russ McQuaid tweeted: "Black Expo sat. nite most peaceful in yrs. Congrats indy." That is until the shooting that  happened in the early morning hours. A 17-year old male was shot in the back in the parking lot of the J.W. Marriott and died later from his injuries after being transported to Wishard Hospital. Police tell Fox59 News they don't believe the shooting was related to Black Expo:
Lt. Chris Bailey said there wasn’t a large crowd downtown and no fights had been reported before the shooting, right around 3 a.m.
“There wasn’t a big disturbance or there wasn’t hundreds of people down in the parking garage,” Bailey said.
According to a police report, detectives detained five people ages 17-20 for questioning. Police had not named any suspects Sunday morning and no arrests had been made.
Officers tell Fox 59 they do not believe the shooting was related to the Indiana Black Expo’s Summer Celebration, where security had been tightened following the deaths of several teenagers, including on the 4th of July. That event has been “problem free,” according to police.
“This was an unbelievably quiet weekend in downtown Indianapolis. We had very few issues if any tonight at all, and it’s sad that the night had to end like this,” Bailey said.
There should be plenty of surveillance video footage to offer strong clues as to what went downtown with the J.W. Marriott's security system. I can't imagine the billionaire Dean White family is too pleased to learn that a murder took place at the luxury hotel they built with more than $60 million in taxpayer dollars. It's not exactly the kind of publicity you want for a marquis hotel. The J.W. Marriott released the following statement that was posted on WISH-TV's news site:
We can confirm there was an incident in our garage that the police are investigating.  It is our understanding this involves a fatality and our thoughts and prayers go out to the deceased and his family.  At this time the police are investigating the incident and we are cooperating fully with the authorities. The police have indicated they believe this to be an isolated incident. As this is an ongoing investigation it would be inappropriate to comment further. As always, the safety and well-being of our guests and associates are among our highest priorities.
UPDATE: This is interesting. WTHR's Richard Essex was actually on a ride-along with an IMPD police officer who was one of the first to respond to the J.W. Marriott parking garage where the shooting victim was found. Yet this reporter can't discern the race of the victim from his front-row seat? Great reporting, Mr. Essex. Why is every single media outlet in town going to such great lengths to hide the ethnicity of this victim?

UPDATE II: Black radio talk show host Amos Brown tweeted early this morning that the victim was African-American. How pathetic that all the white media in this town were too afraid to identify the victim's ethnicity.

If you want a good laugh, check out this new story the Star's Robert King has just posted, titled "Indiana Black Expo Wraps Up Trouble-Free Weekend." Let's see, we had two shootings in the past couple of days downtown, including one fatality, but those shootings were unrelated because shootings happen downtown all the time. Two men were also brutally assaulted and knocked unconscious downtown last weekend but that story was covered up because they didn't want anyone to think it was related to Black Expo or the George Zimmerman verdict.  Downtown Indianapolis looked like the green zone in Baghdad this weekend with the nearly 500 police officers and tactical gear deployed to keep the streets safe. So you have to treat it like a war zone to make it safe and you call that a success? Hah.

In a separate, updated story on last night's shooting, the Star once again goes out of its way to assure us the shooting had nothing to do with Black Expo. It was just a group of teens headed downtown for fun in the wee hours of the morning. The story still won't disclose the victim's race as being African-American, which Amos Brown reported early this morning. The Star called the mother of one of the teens being detained by police who didn't even know her son was being held by police--only that he had gone downtown with friends for fun and never came home last night.
The juvenile, who was 17 years old, was not taking part in Indiana Black Expo activities, said Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department spokesman Lt. Christopher L. Bailey.
Public Safety Director Troy Riggs said as he understood it, the group was traveling from the Northside to Downtown to meet someone at a hotel. IMPD officers provided first-aid until an ambulance arrived and took the victim to Wishard Memorial Hospital, where he died.
Downtown saw a hightened security presence this weekend as crowds poured in for what was expected to be the busiest night of Indiana Black Expo festivities. While Expo events were well over when the shooting happened, IMPD spokesman Christopher Wilburn said there were officers on patrol at the time, and they arrived at the scene within two or three minutes of the incident.
None of those detained are currently considered suspects, and it is unclear if police believe they were involved or just witnessed the incident. No one has been arrested or charged.
Reached by phone Sunday, the mother of one of the detainees said she had no idea her son had been detained by police, but that he had left with a brother last night and did not come home this morning.
“They were just talking about going to have fun,” she said at about noon today.
Incidentally, Black Expo's White Party attended by your esteemed Mayor took place at the Indiana Convention Center last night. It went on from 8:00 p.m. to 2:00 a.m in the Sagamore Ballroom. Since when did the convention center allow a party to go on until the wee hours of the morning? And weren't a number of the attendees staying at the J.W. Marriott last night following last night's activities?

Photo of Mayor Greg Ballard and Winnie at Black Expo's White Party posted by Indy Politics' Abdul-Hakim Shabazz


Anonymous said...

sorry, but Mayor Ballard looks like a stereotype of a street pimp in that pic!

Colin said...

You mean like an idiot.