Friday, August 13, 2010

Thoughts on the Monument Circle Biker Rally and Memorial Service

I arrived at about 6:30pm and stayed for about an hour. During that hour, I talked to about 20 different people, and they almost all said the same thing: the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department is not fit for this investigation.

The rally was held for two reasons. One was to collect signatures on two separate petitions. These petitions would go to the state Supreme Court and (I think) Marion Superior Court. The petitions ask that the court order that a separate body not affiliated with the city/county to investigate. Most of the people I talked to, both organizers and attendees of the rally, felt that Indiana State Police would be a qualified body that would be able to handle the investigation. A few of the people I talked to also didn't trust Marion County Prosecutor Carl Brizzi to handle the prosecution due to the ongoing Tim Durham saga and other scandals Brizzi has been involved in.

The other reason was simply a memorial service for the biker that died, Eric Wells, and the two injured, Mary Mills and Kurt Weekly. Wells was the biker who died last Friday in the accident. Some of Wells' family were there, but my understanding is that they were relatively quiet to most requests to talk to media.

Unlike other rallies and protests I've attended, this one was organized on short notice and largely spread through word of mouth and Facebook. I've long since learned I suck at estimating the size of a crowd, but it was a much larger crowd than what is usually there on a Friday night at 7pm. A number of bikers I talked to mentioned others coming from out of town just for the rally, and one gentleman I talked to hadn't ridden his motorcycle with the group for several years until today.

Something else that was unusual was the lack of police presence. Police were heavily present at the union rally I attended, and there were a few state troopers at the NOM protest as well. I didn't see a single officer near Monument Circle at the time of the rally.

In other news, the defense attorney representing Officer Bisard is saying the BAC measure might not hold up in court. I am not a lawyer, so I don't know how valid his comments are. Gary Welsh does mention that what happens in the criminal prosecution will have little effect on civil prosecution, and all but Wells' family have notified the city that they intend to file tort claims.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you so much for this detailed report about the rally, from your personal vantage, IS, and I am delighted to learn that you were present, and that police presence was not. Any police officer that drives drunk, even once, should be fired. Any police officer who speeds for a run that is not an emergency and recklessly kills and maims, even once, should be fired. Have a great day.


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