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The original item was published from 2/22/2021 9:11:59 AM to 4/2/2021 12:00:02 AM.

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Posted on: February 22, 2021

[ARCHIVED] Zionsville Police Department supportive of establishing regional Gun Crimes Task Force

Michael Spears

Zionsville Police Department Chief Michael Spears and Mayor Emily Styron recently announced support of legislation that would establish a regional Gun Crimes Task Force. State Rep. Greg Steuerwald is proposing HB 1558 to address violent crime in Boone, Hamilton, Hancock, Hendricks, Marion, Morgan, Johnson and Shelby counties by delivering, in cooperation with state and federal officials, a uniform strategy to trace firearms used to commit crimes. 

In 2019, in response to the increasing homicide rates and presence of crime guns in Indianapolis, the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department (IMPD) launched the Crime Gun Intelligence Center (CGIC) to better trace crime guns and identify suspects. In the first year, CGIC data helped lead to the arrests of approximately 350 violent criminals and the removal of 250 crime guns from the street. That’s just with Marion County participating in the program. A missing component of this effort is the lack of coordinated, collaborative information sharing among law enforcement agencies. 

That’s where the Gun Crimes Task Force comes in. HB 1558 establishes a uniform regional strategy for illegal crime gun tracing. The legislation ensures Central Indiana law enforcement agencies work together in a data-driven way to help identify violent criminals and the weapons used to commit these crimes. 

As part of the bill, Indiana State Police and law enforcement agencies within the eight-county Central Indiana region would share their crime gun and ballistics data with the Gun Crimes Task Force. This regional team of detectives would have a centralized intelligence system and the freedom to pursue violent criminals across jurisdictional boundaries.

Chief Michael Spears supports the establishment of the Gun Crimes Task Force as a critical step toward reducing violent crime in Central Indiana.

“Jurisdictional boundaries do not prevent gun violence and other serious crimes,” said Chief Spears. “As a caring member of the greater metropolitan area, we have a responsibility to work together with our neighbors to help reduce violence while concurrently improving the safety and security of Zionsville.” 

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