Several community groups and organizations are rallying behind the loved ones of Aaron Bailey; a 45-year-old unarmed Black man who was fatally shot by Indianapolis Metropolitan police officers on Thursday, reports Indy Star.
Dozens of individuals—including Bailey’s family members and those involved in social justice advocacy groups—gathered at City Market in Downtown Indianapolis to demand justice on Friday. During the demonstration, Satchuel Cole, vice president of a social justice collective called DON’T SLEEP, shared how the narrative of unarmed Black and Brown men losing their lives at the hands of law enforcement officials is becoming all too common. “I am tired,” said Cole, according to the source. “I’m tired of the hashtags. I’m tired of having to do this over, and over and over for black people over, and over and over, and it never stops.”
According to a police report, Bailey was shot after police briefly chased him during a traffic stop, writes the outlet. Police say that he tried to open the car’s console as officers came towards the vehicle and that’s when he was fatally shot.
Bailey’s loved ones also expressed their sadness and confusion over the shooting during the demonstration. “I think we all just want to know why,” said his stepdaughter Angela Bailey. “Why it had to happen like that. Because it was a different route they could have took.”
DON’T SLEEP isn’t the only organization that is extending its support to the Bailey family. The NAACP Greater Indianapolis Branch released a statement that denounced the shooting and used the incident as a lens to examine the relationship between police officials and the communities that they serve.
“Use of excessive force by law enforcement officers can no longer be tolerated in our communities. The lack of accountability erodes trust between law enforcement and the communities they serve, which impedes the ability to solve crime,” said Greater Indianapolis NAACP President Chrystal Ratcliffe. “The NAACP is committed to a proactive approach to police shootings and all other forms of police brutality. Our solution to this egregious problem is accountability.”
Indy Star reports that the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department and the prosecutor’s office will conduct two separate investigations.