Group holds "die-in" at proposed criminal justice center site

January 24, 2015 | WTHR 13 | Link to Article 


INDIANAPOLIS -City leaders this month will consider a proposal to build a new criminal justice center in Indianapolis.

However, on Saturday a small group gathered at the proposed site calling on Mayor Greg Ballard and the City-County Council to invest in "jobs not jails."

"Black Lives Matter" held a "die-in" at the old General Motors stamping plant on the west side. Their message: create an alternative to incarceration instead of adding new jail cells.

They agree a new jail is needed, but they want a greater focus on transitional jobs, and programs that get to the root of violence.

"What we need are violence reduction programs that saves our young men who are being killed every day, programs and alternatives for the homeless and mentally ill, programs that stop illegal immigrants from being locked up and then sent away and deported from their families, and then we just want a chance to give people jobs," said Sharon Trotter, IndyCAN board member.

The protest ended with a symbolic gesture in honor of the African-American teenager who was shot by a Ferguson police officer.

They lay on the ground for four and a half minutes to represent the four and a half hours that Michael Brown's body remained in the street after he was killed.