Archive for District 4

Clarification of Incidents Near the Kroger Store

Posted by Speedway Police Department Capt. Jason Dierdorff on Nextdoor:

It has been brought to our attention that there have been some concerns regarding recent posts online involving the Kroger Store in Speedway. The incident that was described to our Department was a young female that was carrying her 18 month old child into the Kroger Store. She was approached by a passenger in a vehicle who took her purse off of her shoulder and fled the area. After review of cases reported to the Speedway Police Department, we have found no reports that match the facts cited in the internet posts.

However, there have been two incidents reported to our Department within the past three weeks that have occurred in the immediate vicinity of the Kroger Store. The first of those incidents involved a person who left her purse on the trunk lid of her vehicle at the Kroger Gas Station. She did not realize her purse was gone until she arrived home later that same day. The second incident involved an elderly female who did have her purse taken by someone in the parking lot outside the Kroger Store on Crawfordsville Road. There is no suspect description of the person that took the purse and the only vehicle description we have is a dark colored car. This is an ongoing investigation.

Officers from the Speedway Police Department patrol the Speedway Shopping Center regularly, but we encourage everyone to contact us at (317) 246-4300 if you see something suspicious. If it is an emergency, always remember to call 911. We also would remind anyone that lives or shops in the Town of Speedway to be vigilant in securing items in their vehicles whether they are at home or around town. A person can do this by ensuring that their vehicles are locked and all items of value are either removed from the vehicle or hidden from outside view.

Reminder: Speedway Neighborhood Watch Meeting, Wednesday 1/20!

REMINDER: The Speedway Police Department and Speedway Neighborhood Watch will hold a general meeting for January 20th, 2016 at 6:30. Please see flyer below for meeting details. All Speedway residents are encouraged to attend this open forum and discuss community concerns.

Speedway Neighborhood Watch Flyer - January 2016

Speedway Neighborhood Watch Meeting Scheduled for January 20, 2016

The Speedway Police Department and Speedway Neighborhood Watch will be scheduling a general meeting for January 20th, 2016. Please see flyer below for meeting details. All Speedway residents are encouraged to attend this open forum and discuss community concerns.

Speedway Neighborhood Watch Flyer - January 2016

SPD Update: Two Juveniles Apprehended for Theft from Vehicles

Monday, September 14, 2015: At approximately 2:30 A.M. today officers responded to the 5600 block of West 29th Place on the report of an unauthorized entry to a garage and vehicle. Upon arrival in the area officers determined that several vehicles had been entered illegally and items were stolen. Included in the items taken were garage door openers which could have given access to homes in the area. While responding to the run officers located two juveniles in the area that were later determined to be the suspects. Both of the individuals were arrested for various offenses and most of the stolen property was recovered. Homeowners are reminded to always keep their vehicles locked when unattended and remove valuables and garage door openers if vehicles are parked on the street or in a driveway.

Update from SPD Regarding Recent Pursuits

Update from the Speedway Police Department regarding two recent, separate pursuits:

  • Tuesday, 9/1/2015: In response to various discussion on social media regarding police presence near Whitcomb Ave at 18th Street and Speedway Drive in the evening, the following is a response from Capt. Jason Dierdorff: “They were shoplifters from Kohl’s and a short pursuit ended in the neighborhood. Apprehension was made on the female.”
  • Wednesday, 9/2/15: At approximately 2:30 P.M., Speedway Police attempted to stop a motorist for a traffic infraction. The driver immediately attempted to flee by vehicle and then he and a passenger both fled on foot from the 1700 block of Christopher Lane. Speedway K9 Officer Tom tracked the two individuals into a backyard at 1724 Norfolk and they were both taken into custody without further incident.

Speedway National Night Out – Tuesday, October 6th

Please join the Speedway Police Department, Speedway Neighborhood Watch, and Citizens Academy Alumni for an evening of food, information, fun, and community spirit! Help strengthen police-community relationships by meeting with SPD officers, watching police demos, and learning about various anticrime initiatives.

We’ll also have music, kids’ activities, information booths from public safety-related organizations, civic groups, town departments, and much more!

National Night Out is an annual community-building campaign that promotes police-community partnerships and neighborhood camaraderie to make our neighborhoods safer, better places to live. Together, we are making that happen.

National Night Out enhances the relationship between neighbors and law enforcement while bringing back a true sense of community and provides a great opportunity to bring police and neighbors together under positive circumstances.

See attached flyer for more information (click to enlarge).

2015 Speedway NNO

When to Call 911: Emergencies vs. Non-Emergencies

Post originally published on April 13, 2015. Updated April 10, 2018 to reflect the addition of the 311 Non-Emergency number for cell phones.

In response to many people who have asked when to call 911 vs. when to call the non-emergency line, we hope this post from the Speedway Police Department will offer some guidance and clarification. As of April 9, 2018, Marion County has implemented a non-emergency phone system for cell phones, where residents can cell 311. For those on a land line, continue to use the SPD non-emergency number of (317) 246-4300, which also can be found on the right sidebar of this site.

What is an Emergency?

An “emergency” is an event that poses immediate, significant threat to life and/or property. The following are examples of an emergency:

  • A request for medical assistance
  • A person threatening to harm themselves or others
  • A noise from the next dorm room or apartment that sounds like a violent physical encounter.
  • A crime in progress
  • A situation which requires a police officer at the scene (e.g. assaults, kidnappings, burglaries, domestic disputes, terrorist threats, robberies, vehicle theft that has just occurred, vehicle or hit and run accidents with known or suspected injuries, gang related disturbance calls or any disturbance call involving a weapon, etc.)
  • Fire, hazardous chemical spill, smoke in your house or building, sparking electrical hazards, or fire/smoke detector or carbon monoxide alarms are sounding
  • Suspicious criminal activity (e.g. alarms, shots fired, shouts for help, and sounds of breaking glass, unfamiliar person carrying items dorm room or apartment, an occupied suspicious vehicle)
  • If the situation changes before help arrives, call 9-1-1 again and give the call taker the updated information

Examples of Non-Emergency Calls

  • Directions
  • Lost or stolen property
  • To determine if someone has been arrested
  • Non-injury traffic accidents. If you are unsure of injuries it can be considered an emergency call
  • Loud music or loud party complaints, barking dogs
  • Juvenile complaints of a non-threatening nature such as skateboarding, or loitering
  • Parking complaints
  • Abandoned vehicles, unless suspected stolen
  • Delayed reports

When You Call 9-1-1 (Items You May Be Asked to Provide)

  • Briefly explain the nature of your emergency or complaint
  • Your name, address and telephone number
  • Location (the address where the incident is occurring)
    • The location of occurrence is so the police know where to send the help. That might be the first question a dispatcher or call taker will ask you. WHY? If the call is disconnected, or there is a phone problem, the location of the incident is the minimum amount of information needed to send help. Since the address has such great importance, please be sure to give a full description of your location. For example: Provide the building or apartment name and room number or where you are in the building; or Indy 500 Track.
    • If outside, provide a description of where you are. Be specific. For example, if you are at the track, state you are near the front entrance of turn #4, in the back of the restrooms.
    • If you are driving to your destination, and calling about something you saw on the way, provide the closest cross streets to the incident occurrence. For example, Crawfordsville and Cunningham.
    • Once an officer arrives at the location originally provided, it is not uncommon for the situation or location to have changed.  The police department will often use your location as a starting point to search for what you reported. If the officer is unable to find anything, they may respond back to your address and talk to you for additional information, but only if you want contact.
  • Once the police department has the very basic information they need to send help, the dispatcher will start asking more questions, such as:
    • Who caused the problem, when the incident occurred?
    • Why do you think the situation happened?

Time from the Incident to Your Call

If the problem you are reporting just occurred (or 5 -10 minutes before you called), the questions the police department asks will be different then if the situation occurred the night before. The next set of questions the police department asks may be about the person you think is responsible for causing the problem or the situation.

How to Describe a Person or Suspect

When providing a suspect description to an officer, describe that person in a certain manner. Start from the top of their head and work down to the toes. For example: White male adult about 5’ feet 7” tall, blond hair, blue eyes, with a mustache and goatee.

For the clothing description, start from the outside and move in towards the body from the top of the head and moving down to the toes. For example:
The subject is wearing a New York Yankees hat, red jacket, blue flannel shirt with a white t-shirt underneath, black belt with silver type belt buckle, blue jeans and sneakers.

Information Needed if a Vehicle was Involved

How would one give information to the dispatcher or call taker if a vehicle was involved? There are certain questions asked, and in a certain order for a vehicle description. The reason dispatchers ask these questions in this way is because the officer responding to the call may spot a similar vehicle on the way to your call, the same color or year or the same make or body style. If possible, provide the license plate number too.

Here is a list of questions the dispatcher or call taker may ask about the description of a vehicle:

  • License Plate
  • Color
  • Year
  • Make
  • Body Style

The Speedway Police Department encourages you to call if you feel something is suspicious or potentially warrants their attention. They are more than happy to patrol any areas necessary to help identify or deter any potential dangers. If you feel something to be suspicious NEVER hesitate to call the department. We hope this guide helps direct you to emergency vs. non-emergency lines – thank you!

Burglary Suspect Apprehended by K9

This evening there was burglary from a garage in the area of 5200 W. 15th. Suspect was found at pawn shop shortly after and resisted the Detective, then fled the area. Suspect was not located but was identified. 
Several hours later, the suspect was back in Speedway and K9 Officer Turpin recognized the vehicle. Officer Turpin attempted to stop suspect, who fled on foot. K9 Tom was deployed and after a short foot chase, suspect was apprehended by K9 Tom and Officer Turpin.

Speedway Resident’s Observation Leads to Drug Arrest

A Speedway resident’s observation and quick reporting to the Speedway Police Department last night led to the arrest of the suspect regarding a drug deal near Pam’s Pitstop Pizza.

Steve Satterly recalls the details of his encounter at his blog, Staying Alive: How to Act Fast and Survive Deadly Encounters. Steve is also an Alumni of the Speedway Police Department’s Citizens Academy.

As noted in his blog post, Steve’s actions were appreciated by the police department, who cannot be everywhere, all the time. They rely upon the partnership of residents to report suspicious activity – it’s all of us helping each other. Steve writes:

Police officers are paid to make such calls, and have been given training on making such calls. They would love nothing better than to get a call like mine, go check it out, and have it be nothing. Or, a situation like this one occurs, and a bad man selling poison on the streets is removed and put in jail.

Situational awareness is not only being aware of what is going on around you and being able to recognize when something is amiss, it’s the starting point for a string of decisions that can mean the difference between catching a criminal or allowing the crime to continue, or in some instance, life or death.

Thank you Steve and to the Speedway Police Department! This is an excellent example of how Speedway residents can partner with the Speedway Police Department, report suspicious activity, and can effect real change in our town and help us stay safe.

If you see something, say something.

Neighborhood Watch Meeting Recap: Crime Statistics

Speedway Neighborhood Watch held a meeting on Thursday, February 26, 2015 at the American Legion. Despite the chilly temperatures, the meeting was very well attended. Prior to the meeting, Speedway residents (many from social media site Nextdoor) got together for dinner and socializing.

Speedway Neighborhood Watch Meeting - February 2015
Speedway Neighborhood Watch Meeting - February 2015

Speedway Police Department Sgt. Mirantha Wilson opened the meeting and introduced Chief Jim Campbell, who gave a presentation on crime statistics that were recently published on an online real estate brokerage site/blog.

Speedway Neighborhood Watch Meeting - February 2015

During their presentation, Chief Campbell and Assistant Chief Chuck Upchurch displayed the UCR (Uniform Crime Reporting) statistics in various charts, explaining more about the particular circumstances of several cases, particularly homicides. They also reviewed statistics for other crimes against people, including rape and assault. Chief Campbell explained that due to the nature and circumstances surrounding such crimes (domestic violence, fights, etc.), the police are typically unable to prevent such crimes from occurring.

Speedway Neighborhood Watch Meeting - February 2015

Various types of theft were discussed such as robbery (when a person takes something from another using some sort of force; i.e., a gun, knife, or other threat to another person), burglary (breaking and entering a structure), vehicle theft, and theft (including shoplifting and thefts from vehicles). It is in this area, where residents can assist the police department by reporting any suspicious activity.

Chief Campbell explained a couple of reasons for the increased theft statistics in our area. First is due to the responsive nature of the Speedway Police Department. He indicated that in some municipalities, the police do not respond to certain calls. In Speedway, the police department wants to know what is going on in town; therefore, all calls are responded to by a police officer, no matter how minor. In addition, the higher number of thefts (in comparison to other areas) can also be attributed to the fact that many Speedway businesses choose to address and deal with shoplifters, resulting in more arrests. In many other stores around the city, the management chooses to let shoplifters go and take a loss, rather than attempting to stop the crime.

Further, some of the thefts involve local pharmacies. Chief Campbell noted that nationwide, many pharmacies, CVS in particular, are increasingly targeted. In two recent cases involving CVS in Speedway, the suspects were quickly apprehended and arrested.

Chief Campbell showed the breakdown of the various crimes by type of property such as individual residence, businesses, and apartments. He also broke down the crimes by each apartment complex. He explained that the Speedway Police Dept. has a trespass arrangement with the apartment management, whereby Officers, on behalf of the management, can cite people on the property for trespass as applicable. Each subsequent trespass citation results in a greater level of offense, eventually leading to arrest. SPD has cited over 800 people for trespass, that would not have occurred without this arrangement.

The Chief summarized his presentation on crime statistics by stressing the importance of community policing. He explained that police were not meant to be solely responsible for a community’s safety. Rather, it takes a partnership between residents and the police department. He discussed the department’s two community policing initiatives, the Speedway Police Citizens Academy, a 12-week program where residents learn more about the police department in a variety of classes on topics from use of force, drugs, patrol procedures, and more. The SPD Citizens Academy has 106 graduates, who are part of an active alumni association and assist the department. The next class starts in September, and all Speedway residents or business owners can apply.

The other community policing initiative is the Neighborhood Watch program, where residents watch over their neighborhoods, serving as the extra “eyes and ears” of the department and immediately reporting any suspicious activities or crimes that have taken place.  For example, if a car has been broken into (whether unlocked or not and whether only minor items have been taken) should be reported, so that they can investigate, track any trends in your area, and increase patrols accordingly.

Chief Campbell also indicated that the police department is working on notifying residents about incidents using Nextdoor, but that it’s not always feasible to do so immediately. Often, it takes time for the information to be compiled and sorted.  However, any resident concerned about a particular incident, is encouraged to contact their Neighborhood Watch District Coordinator, who will in turn communicate with the police department for appropriate response. The email addresses for the District Coordinators are listed on the right side of this page (click here for a District Map, if you are unsure of your district).

Sgt. Wilson continued the meeting by discussing the school lockdown procedures, explaining that there is a process in place for notification to area schools including private and parochial, and that the process is being expanded to include in-home daycare providers as well.

Lastly, Sgt. Wilson reiterated the use of Nextdoor for use as a Neighborhood Watch tool, as well as for community discussion and getting to know your neighbors. Part of the site’s purpose is “civil and respectful” discussion of community concerns, even if it leads to disagreement. While there are always online disagreements, if there is anything you don’t want to see, simply ignore that conversation and move on.  Sgt. Wilson reminded everyone that the goal is to work together to help keep Speedway safe and build our community. Many in the audience responded that they were using the site, and were pleased with it.  In addition, she emphasized that SPD is continuing to use Nextdoor to provide information on incidents, street closures, etc.

A brief demonstration of the site was provided, along with tips to help with email management of notifications from the site, as well as a reminder that any posts from the City of Indianapolis with regard to essential services (trash pickup, etc.) do not apply to Speedway.

Sgt. Wilson closed the meeting by thanking everyone for coming and encouraging them to continue to be involved in the Speedway community and Neighborhood Watch.

%d bloggers like this: