IBLC calls for justice in the killing of Herman Whitfield III
INDIANAPOLIS – This morning, the Marion County Coroner's Office today ruled the death of Herman Whitfield III as a homicide. Whitfield, 39, was killed by Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department (IMPD) officers on April 25 while experiencing a mental health crisis. State Rep. Robin Shackleford (D-Indianapolis), chair of the Indiana Black Legislative Caucus, issued the following statement:
“In a perfect world, Herman Whitfield III – and the countless other Black men in America – would still be alive after their interactions with police,” Shackleford said. “Unfortunately, Mr. Whitfield was one of many African Americans killed by police in this country. While we in the IBLC continue to fight for systematic changes that will prevent future homicides at the hands of police officers, we are also calling for justice for Mr. Whitfield and his family.
“This week, the case will be turned over to the Marion County Prosecutor's Office to consider charges. We trust that the Prosecutor will review the evidence in this case carefully and make his decision accordingly.
“It's important to note that a new nationwide number, 9-8-8, has replaced the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline number to get help for those in need during a mental health crisis. Trained professionals will receive these calls and will be dispatched to de-escalate situations when necessary. It is my hope that this change will make it easier for individuals to get the help they need without putting them in further danger.”