U.S. Department of Justice
United States Attorney
Southern District of Indiana
Southern District of Indiana
For Immediate Release
June 21, 2012
Joseph H. Hogsett, United States Attorney
Contact: Tim Horty
U.S. Attorney Announces Federal Charges Tied to Shooting of IMPD Officer David Moore
Hogsett Discusses More Results in Effort to Protect Law Enforcement, Combat Illegal Gun Trade
INDIANAPOLIS – Today, Joseph H. Hogsett, the United States Attorney, announces that Eric “Boo” Jenkins, age 53, of Indianapolis, has been charged by federal indictment with three counts of possessing a firearm as a convicted felon, and with one count of having conspired to provide firearms to a convicted felon. Specifically, Jenkins has been charged with acquiring and providing firearms to convicted felons Thomas Hardy and Kim Johnson.
“Our commitment is real, and our resolve is unwavering,” Hogsett said. “This office simply will not tolerate violence against our law enforcement officers, just as we will not allow the lawless behavior that enables such tragedies to go unpunished.”
The indictment alleges that Jenkins provided a loaded Bersa .380 caliber semiautomatic handgun to Thomas Hardy, known by Jenkins to be a convicted felon, on or about January 23, 2011. Hardy subsequently shot IMPD Officer David Moore numerous times with that firearm after Officer Moore stopped Hardy’s vehicle. Officer Moore passed away on January 26, 2011. It is also alleged in the indictment that Jenkins provided Kim Johnson, also a convicted felon, with a different firearm on January 23, 2011.
Early last year, in reaction to the alarming increase in the number of law enforcement officers killed in the line of duty, Joseph H. Hogsett, the United States Attorney, announced the creation of a VCI aimed at reducing violent, gun-related crime throughout Hoosier communities while providing greater protection to law enforcement officers.
Tragically, in January 2011, the City of Indianapolis lost Officer David Moore to a gunman who was also a convicted felon. In July 2011, Terre Haute Police Officer Brent Long was gunned down by an illegally armed felon who later took his own life. In December 2011, IMPD Officer Dwayne Runnels was shot by a convicted felon during a routine traffic stop.
In the case of Officer Long’s death, state law did not provide an effective path of prosecution against those who were collaterally involved. As a result, seven people who might otherwise have walked away from the tragedy were charged with various federal offenses, including providing false statements to law enforcement and illegally providing the firearm used in the shooting. All pleaded guilty.
Similarly, Hogsett announced recently the federal indictment of Tarus E. Blackburn, Jr., age 23, of Indianapolis, who is alleged to have purchased a weapon that was provided to an individual who, two months later in December 2011, used the weapon to shoot Officer Runnels.
This prosecution was the result of a collaborative investigation which included significant assistance from the ATF, as well as IMPD and the Marion County Prosecutor’s Office.
According to Assistant U.S. Attorney Barry Glickman, who is prosecuting the case for the government, Jenkins faces a maximum of 10 years in prison and a $250,000.00 fine on each count if convicted of possessing a firearm as a convicted felon. He faces up to 5 years and a $250,000 fine if convicted of having provided that firearm to convicted felon.
An indictment is only a charge and is not evidence of guilt. A defendant is presumed innocent and is entitled to a fair trial at which the government must prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.