Saturday, October 17, 2015

The Intersection of College Avenue and Murder

     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.


Old 1811 said...

I went to college in Indianapolis in 1974. That was the year IPD Officer Robert Schachte was murdered at 43rd and College. Has that area gentrified?
At that time anything north of North St. and south of about 50th was bad. There were always mini-riots going on around 10th and Indiana, and IPD Officer Ronald Manley was murdered in a drugstore armed robbery at 18th and Illinois (also in 1974).
The last time I spent any time in Indianapolis was 1987, so I've lost track of things there.

Home on the Range said...

Taking the freeway to work actually takes longer than the side streets, and the side street route I take is NOT the shortest, but it avoids a couple areas of the city I don't want to drive after dark. It's sad we have to plan our drive based on where we're less likely to be hit by stray gangland gunfire.

Tam said...

19th Street's his stomping ground...