Friday, July 18, 2014

IMPD: New Roving Covert SWAT Team Here To Stay

If you thought it was something out of the ordinary earlier this week when an IMPD SWAT team was immediately on the scene as an 18-year old with a lengthy criminal record began firing on another car to take him out, you were right. IMPD tells the Star's Jill Disis that it is a new covert SWAT team established to covertly track the City's most violent offenders.
The gunfire was over almost as soon as it started.
One minute, the man was talking with people inside a red car.
The next, police said, he began shooting — prompting two officers to jump from an unmarked police car nearby, guns at the ready.
When the man didn’t comply with ­police commands, the officers fired.
Suspect down. Incident over.
The operation early Tuesday in the 1300 block of West Pruitt Street wasn’t like others the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department has conducted in the past. This time, the responding officers were not from the department’s ­patrol units.
They were members of IMPD’s new full-time SWAT force — a tactical change that is here to stay, Chief Rick Hite said.
“It’s a more direct approach to support the mission of the district commanders in each of the districts they’re assigned to,” Hite said. “They’re targeting those violent offenders in those areas where we have violent crime.”
In the past, the city’s SWAT team operated on a callout basis, suiting up specifically to deal with dangerous situations such as crowd violence or armed suspects barricaded inside buildings.  
The full-time SWAT team, with about a dozen members, has a different mission: to seek out and neutralize violent offenders . . .
Because this SWAT team is operating under cover, the SWAT team members ride in unmarked cars and are not wearing uniforms.  The covert SWAT team was operating in this particular area on that given night because of reports of shots being fired in recent days. Disis' report says that full-time SWAT teams of this sort are out of the ordinary in police departments across the country, but they are "a staple in some of the nation's biggest cities, such as Chicago, New York and Los Angeles." Her report notes that such efforts have been criticized by groups like the American Civil Liberties Union, which argues that some police departments are becoming too militarized and adopt a "warrior mentality," seeing the people they serve as the enemy. It looks like there's no need for any Paul Kerseys in Indianapolis as long as this SWAT team is here to stay.


Anonymous said...

"new full-time SWAT force"

Read: the martial-law rollout just ascended to the next level.

Anonymous said...

Check your facts before you publish your articles. The SWAT officers in this incident were IN FULL UNIFORM in unmarked cars in this incident. Here is something that will ruffle your feathers.

Gary R. Welsh said...

"The SWAT officers usually wear the IMPD uniform but also may work as plainclothes officers."

Gary R. Welsh said...

I would add that police officers don't typically work in covert operations dressed "IN FULL UNIFORM." It kind of defeats the purpose of the "covert" aspect of the operation.

Anonymous said...

You could not be more wrong, Anon 7:38. You'd be hard pressed to find a SWAT unit anywhere in America more concerned with following both 4th Amendment case law and nationally recognized best practices.

Unknown said...

I notice the website has no info on who publishes this site.
I wonder if the taxpayers are paying for this, too?

I also notice the Home page photo is an old Crown Vic instead of one of his fleet of new Dodge Chargers.

Gary R. Welsh said...

I'm surprised the Democratic council members aren't pushing the use of sheriff's deputies for LEO duties instead of raising taxes to hire more if that's the position Layton holds.

Anonymous said...

That's because IMPD is in a turf war with the Sheriff.

C. Roger Csee said...

Gary 12:20 PM -
Very few of the deputies on MCSO are "merit" deputies.
The biggest majority are "court" deputies, "building" deputies, or "civil" deputies.
Their training is NOT recognized by the state of Indiana as "certified law enforcement officers."
Then there is the matter of hiring standard differences between the two agencies.
IMPD tries to hire the highest quality candidates they can (within the guidelines demanded by politics).
MCSO is a patronage department.
I think the majority of IMPD officers arrested since 2007 came from MCSD.

Anonymous said...

C. Roger Csee is correct:

1) All deputies are "Special Deputies" with law enforcement powers only when acting in their capacity on-duty.

2) They are not recognized as full Law Enforcement Officers in Indiana.

3) Most are cronies, or political hire-ons, (Quid-pro-quo).

4) There is no such thing as a "turf war" as Anon 10:50 wrongfully alleges without any supporting documentation.

5) Indianapolis needs to require CCC approval of all positions created at MCSD and eliminate patronage or crony make-work, do-nothing jobs. We can't afford that corruption, Sheriff Layton (D).