Thursday, July 1, 2010

Police force tensions bring Reverend Al Sharpton to Indianapolis

 Sharpton to speak about racial tensions following Brandon Johnson case

Indianapolis - Reverend Al Sharpton will speak in Indianapolis Sunday July 11th at Eastern Star Church at 5750 East 30th Street. Sharpton will speak about police brutality and focus on the case involving Brandon Johnson who suffered injuries following excessive force used by IMPD officers.

An FBI investigation into the case remains open. The Baptist Ministers Alliance organized the event to bring Sharpton to town. Sharpton is expected to talk about racial tensions surrounding the case and address concerns about IMPD within the black community.

Talk show host Amos Brown says there's one city leader in particular he feels hasn't played a necessary role in dialogue surrounding the Johnson case.

"Mayor Ballard ran his campaign saying he wanted to head up public safety but he has been conspicuously absent in this entire situation," said Brown. "It's time for the Mayor to sit down with leadership within the African-American community and work this out."

"What is he going to say that hasn't been said," said Olgen Williams, Deputy Mayor of Neighborhoods. Williams defended Ballard who he says felt it best Public Safety Director Frank Straub handle the case.

"That's his(the Mayor's) leadership style. He lets people do their job and I think public safety did a good job and met with the community."

Straub is out of town but his spokesperson said he is aware of Sharpton's visit but hasn't learned the exact schedule and has made no decision yet if he will attend.

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