IMPD officers shot at while on duty three times so far this year

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) —  A police officer is talking about the dangers of the job after recent cases involving shots fired at officers in Indianapolis.

IMPD officers have been shot at while in the line of duty three times so far this year, according to IMPD Commander Chris Bailey of the north district.

The most recent case happened last Friday night near Patricia Street and Welch Drive during a pursuit.

The suspect got away after shooting at the officer multiple times. Police said the officer did not shoot back.

Police said they found the suspect’s car and have since processed it for any evidence. Another car was involved in the pursuit. Police are now asking that driver to come forward.

Officer Santos Cortez thinks about the men and women in blue every day.

“We’re just normal human beings, we bleed blood just like everybody else,” Cortez said. “We have wives and children, and husbands and children and we’re just out there trying to do our jobs you know?”

It was just last week when police say a suspect shot at an officer during a chase on the northwest side of Indianapolis.

A similar incident happened on the city’s south side last month. The officer shot back and suffered an injured hand.

“The times that we’re in right now, you know where nobody respect law enforcement,” Cortez said. “You know, they all think that we’re bad.”

Cortez knows about the dangers and risks of being an officer.

“You know initially thinking by the time I get to him he’d probably be gone,” Cortez said. “But I’m really close so maybe I’ll get really lucky and catch him and send him to jail.”

He’s now paralyzed after being hit by a drunk driver, while responding to a call almost four years ago.

“Something just told me that he was in the area still so it’s just that instinct that you have, that little hair on the back of your neck stands up,” Cortez said. “So I just went and continued my search for him and low and behold he found me.”

Cortez doesn’t remember much after that. He now goes to therapy three times a week hoping to gain movement back in his legs.

“At this point, you know, I never say I’m stuck in this chair because only God can make that change for me,” he said.

Cortez said he feels sad hearing about the recent cases, but knows it comes with the territory

“We as officers make that sacrifice and we know that that’s the danger of our jobs and it could happen,” Cortez said.

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