INDIANAPOLIS — A police officer died after being shot multiple times while responding to a traffic crash on the south side of Indianapolis, authorities said Thursday.
Lt. Aaron Allen of the Southport Police Department was responding to a call about a crash with people trapped inside a vehicle Thursday afternoon when he was shot, Sgt. Kendale Adams of the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department told reporters at a news conference. Allen died at Eskenazi Hospital, Adams said.
“Shots were fired by one of the vehicle’s occupants, striking the Southport lieutenant,” Adams said.
Police say it was 28-year-old Jason Brown who fired the shots. Brown has been arrested on a preliminary murder charge in the fatal shooting
Two other officers at the scene, including one who was off-duty at the time, returned fire, striking a person inside the vehicle, Adams said.
Allen, 38, was a six-year veteran of the Southport department and had nearly 20 years of law enforcement experience, Southport Police Chief Thomas Vaughn said.
“Lieutenant Allen was a hard worker, and today was no different. He responded to a crash with urgency to preserve life. Tragically, his was lost,” Vaughn said at the news conference.
Adams said investigators haven’t said who was wounded and what prompted the shooting.
On Thursday night, Indianapolis Mayor Joe Hogsett called Allen’s death “a shocking and tragic reminder of the difficult, often dangerous work of police officers.” He said the community grieves for the Allen family.
Neighborhood resident Bryan McGary told WXIN-TV the shooting was unusual for the area.
“It’s just hard to believe that this would happen here. I mean I’ve lived here since 1976 and we really haven’t had much. . We do have a lot of policemen in our area that live here so it’s just one of those things,” McGary said.
Southport is an enclave within the city limits of Indianapolis.