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17-year-old arrested in mass shooting

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The Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department (IMPD) Homicide detectives have arrested a suspect they believe was involved in a mass shooting Jan. 24. The identity of the male suspect has not been released because he is a juvenile.

IMPD officers responded to a report of a person shot at the 2200 block of East 36th Street around 4 a.m. where they found a juvenile male with gunshot wounds who was taken to a local hospital. IMPD later received information that led them to a house in the 2500 block of Adams Street. There, officers found five individuals with gunshot wounds, all of whom were deceased.

Kezzie and Raymond Childs, both 42, were killed alongside their two children, Elijah Childs, 18, and Rita Childs, 13. Kiara Hawkins, 19, and her unborn baby were also found dead in the home. It is currently unknown how Hawkins was related to the family. The injured male found on East 36th Street is Kezzie and Raymond Childs’ 15-year old son, who is expected to survive his injuries.

According to a Fox59 report, the 15-year old unnamed victim told police his 17-year-old brother shot him and killed the family following an argument with Raymond Childs. The suspect is expected to be charged as an adult.

IMPD has not responded to requests for comments from the Recorder.​

“Yesterday, we promised swift justice for this heinous act,” IMPD Chief Randal Taylor said in a statement Jan. 25. “While removing the alleged perpetrator of yesterday’s mass murder from our neighborhoods does not bring back the lives senselessly lost, hopefully it will bring us one step closer to healing as a community. I am grateful for all of the IMPD officers and criminal justice partners who have worked tirelessly for the last 30 plus hours to bring justice for these victims, their friends and families, and our entire community. I ask community members to join me in praying for the continued recovery of the young man whose life has been forever changed.”

With a suspect apprehended, city leaders are urging Indianapolis to consider root causes of violence.

“Our entire community is mourning the loss of life in yesterday’s mass murder on Adams Street,” City County Council President Vop Osili said in a statement Jan. 25. “Today, we grieve the news from law enforcement that a juvenile may have been behind this tragedy. … It’s impossible not to be saddened and frustrated by the violence impacting our community, but we cannot let it diminish our resolve to tackle the causes of despair that underlie this violence.”

At this stage in the investigation, detectives are not looking for any other suspects. This incident was the largest mass casualty in Indianapolis in over a decade.

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