Driving home from work last night, I was headed north up College in heavy traffic a few blocks north of the 38th St. (a major east-west thoroughfare that runs past the State Fairgrounds) when a southbound police car with lights and sirens caused us all to pull over. A few minutes later, four more followed, and looking in my rear-view mirror, it appeared they'd taken up position at the stoplight at 38th, blocking it from both directions and hold College open.
Just as traffic got back to moving, two ambulances came roaring south and we all pulled over yet again. I hadn't noticed anything when I crossed 38th, but there's a fair amount of foot traffic there, so it could have been ugly--
It was ugly but it wasn't at 38th. There's a little commercial corner eight blocks south of that intersection, a gas station turned repair shop, a commercial building with three dead storefronts, a former school that's now a retirement home and a gas-and-snacks convenience store that faces 30th Street.
At the latter, a man had run over the curb in a minivan, stopped, got out, collapsed and died. He had been shot moments before. So far, police have no idea why. There's a lot of crime within a few blocks of 30th, right across the city; if a shooting or home invasion is reported, the odds are pretty good it will have happened between 22nd and 38th.
This has been a bad year for murders in Indianapolis but it's a big city. If you follow the guidelines, "Nothing good happens on the street after 9:00 p.m.," and, "Don't go stupid places with stupid people," you'd usually never know if you didn't see the news. This is as close as it has come to me. Because it has fewer stoplights and less traffic than Meridian Street, I've been taking College Avenue all the way from Broad Ripple down to 16th for years now. Maybe that's no longer such a good idea.
2 months ago