Police recover equipment stolen from IMPD car

Booking photo shows Michael Bennett (Provided Photo/IMPD)

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – Stolen police equipment is back in the hands of authorities after a traffic stop on the city’s east side. Officers arrested two men and said they were in possession of police items and gear belonging to the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department.

Police believe the men broke into at least one unmarked police car as it was parked outside of the officer’s home, likely not realizing it was a police car until after they got inside of it and started finding IMPD gear.

Items like emergency lights, a ballistic vest, a helmet and a Taser were all taken.

“It is police property and obviously if used improperly could pose some risk to the community,” said Sgt. Kendale Adams with IMPD.

Police say the theft happened early Monday morning. Around 6:00 p.m. Monday, officers initiated a traffic stop in the 2800 block of Mithoeffer Road. They found the suspects in possession of their own guns and a bag of IMPD items.

An investigation led police to a nearby home on the 1700 block of N. DeQuincy Street where more property belonging to IMPD was found.

Police arrested Michael Bennett and David Patricks in connection with this case.

“Luckily we are not talking about weapons, we are talking about non-lethal equipment, but at the end of the day its equipment that we would like to get back in the hands of the proper authorities,” said Sgt. Adams.

As of Tuesday, there was still one Taser that had not been recovered.

“One of the statements that we received from one of the suspects was that the reason we didn’t recover the Taser was because they had already sold that Taser for heroin,” said Sgt. Adams.

Police are still actively working to track that down, but they say procedures set up by the department prevented this theft from becoming much worse.

Weapons stored in squad cars are required to be kept in a lock box or secure rack system.

“That is probably why we are not looking at a more serious theft of police weapons,” said Sgt. Adams.

The Marion County prosecutor is currently reviewing this case and is expected to make a charging decision soon.