On Friday, April 5, 2024, Fox 59 reported that the Fraternal Order of Police held a news conference to respond to the sentencing of Elliahs Dorsey.

Dorsey was convicted of reckless homicide and other charges for the 2018 shooting of Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Officer Breann Leath. Last week, he was sentenced to 25 years in prison by Judge Mark Stoner. However, Rick Snyder, president of the Indianapolis Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 86, felt the sentence was too lenient.

At the press conference, Snyder strongly criticized Judge Stoner’s decision. He believed Dorsey should have received the maximum possible sentence of 63 years for what Snyder called the “cold blooded murder” of Officer Leath. Snyder argued this sentence sends the wrong message that violent offenders can get away with shooting or killing police by claiming a mental health issue.

To address what he viewed as a “miscarriage of justice,” Snyder called for multiple reforms. Firstly, he said Judge Stoner should step down from the Marion County bench. Snyder also proposed establishing an independent civilian board to review sentencing decisions in the county court system. This board would provide feedback to the Indiana Supreme Court to help set better guidelines for courts.

In addition, Snyder requested a meeting with Governor Eric Holcomb to explore more options through potential executive actions. Locally, he urged Mayor Joe Hogsett and the City-County Council to create a commission examining criminal justice outcomes. Lastly, Snyder questioned Indiana’s policy of making judges unelected positions.

IMPD Chief Chris Bailey and Mayor Hogsett both voiced disappointment in the sentencing. Bailey said “I’m disappointing in where we ended up,” while Hogsett described himself as “shocked and disappointed.” Officer Leath’s mother, Jennifer Leath, fully agreed with the police union’s criticism. She believes the ruling effectively makes it “open season” for violent criminals in Indianapolis without consequences.

While Judge Stoner maintained the 15-year probation period would ensure Dorsey is not a danger, Snyder and others clearly felt Dorsey’s sentence was too lenient and did not deliver appropriate justice for Officer Leath and her family. The Fraternal Order of Police is pushing for significant reforms to address what they see as faults in the city’s criminal justice system.



Source: Fox 59