Neighbor fed up after 3 shootings in 3 weeks

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Police say a man is dead after he beat his girlfriend’s mother with a baseball bat.

Officers say someone at a house in the 3100 block of McClure Street fired in self-defense, killing 47-year-old Wendell Vanbuskirk.

This is the third shooting in as many weeks, in just a matter of blocks from the Mars Hill neighborhood. One neighbor who lives there is sick of the apathy.

IMPD officers say Vanbuskirk busted into a family barbecue and beat 47-year-old Lisa Farling, with a bat.

“This simply was a tragedy that didn’t have to happen,” said IMPD Sergeant Kendale Adams.

That’s when police say someone at the party fired shots out of self-defense, killing Wendell. 52-year-old Quincy Franklin and 30-year-old Joshua Curbeaux were waiting for Wendell in the truck. Police say when they heard the initial shots, they started firing shots back. One bullet struck Farling in the face and another hit 34-year-old Aridith Curbeaux.

“It was about four or five shots last night,” said Mars Hill neighbor Amy Bell.

Bell is worried sick for her 3-year-old son.

“It’s terrifying to think that he’s ever going to get hurt or he’s going to end up like these people,” said Bell.

Bell lives just a couple blocks away from the crime scene on McClure. She also lives just a couple of blocks away from where someone shot 32-year-old Brandon Keck in the chest Sunday in the 3200 block of Rybolt. On June 4 someone shot and killed 45-year-old Harry Briggs while he was working at this gas station at Troy and Lynhurst. That’s a gas station about two miles from Bell’s house where she frequented. She tells 24-Hour News 8 she had just talked to Briggs about the violence problem in Mars Hill days before he was shot.

“We needed a crime watch or something. And him and I were speaking about it. He went out and cleaned up the parking lot. Then Wednesday he was gone,” said Bell.

There have been no arrests in any of the three cases. Police are still searching for the gunmen in the Rybolt and gas station shootings. As for the McClure shooting, IMPD investigators say there likely won’t be an arrest because the survivors who fired shots are believed to have done so out of self-defense.

Bell says it’s time for her community to step up.

“I wish that the good people of the neighborhood would get together. I mean, these things are happening all over. You can’t tell me no one has seen anything,” she said.

Farling was taken to Sidney & Lois Eskenazi Hospital in critical condition. There’s no update on how she’s doing.

If you have any information on any of these crimes you’re asked to call Crime Stoppers at 262-TIPS.

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