On June 5, a crowd of protestors gathered at the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department (IMPD) Northwest District Headquarters building to chalk the IMPD parking lot.
Though several officers stood near the building’s entrance to watch the event, they didn’t interact with the crowd, and the protest remained peaceful.
According to the Indy10 Black Lives Matter Facebook event page, the event was aimed at chalking in remembrance of Dreasjon “Sean” Reed.
Dreasjon Reed was killed on Wednesday, May 6 after an encounter with the IMPD. Reed, who was 21 years old, was recording on Facebook Live when he was fatally shot. Despite the Facebook Live video and several eyewitness accounts that contradict the police officers’ version of events, the Marion Superior Court did not appoint a special prosecutor to the case until June 4.
The IMPD building’s parking lot was almost completely covered in messages demanding justice for Reed and answers about his death by 6:30 p.m.
Several attendees also wrote messages asking for justice for Breonna Taylor, who was killed by Louisville Metro Police Department officers on March 13. The chalking for Dreasjon Reed event took place on what would’ve been Breonna Taylor’s 27th birthday.
Several of the event organizers and various community members spoke to the crowd to reiterate the demands for Dreasjon Reed’s case and call attention to the current issues with the criminal justice system. Indy10 Black Lives Matter lists the following demands for Reed’s case:
Release the officer’s name
- Fire the officer
- Indict the officer
- Review and rewrite the use of force policy
- [Offer] an apology for the comments and lies made after the shooting
Over the megaphone, organizers led chants demanding the IMPD “release the coroner’s report” and “tell the truth.” They also reminded the crowd that, in recent weeks, protesting has proven to be successful in cities across the country; they specifically cited Minneapolis Public Schools’ decision to end its contract with the Minneapolis Police Department and Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti’s budget cuts to the Los Angeles Police Department.
One attendee, who asked to remain anonymous, explained that it was important for her to attend the event because, after viewing the Dreasjon Reed Facebook Live video, she believes he was murdered.
“Young people need to be out here because we’re the future,” she said. “We’re the future, we’re the change, and it’s very important for us to be out here.”