Cops Versus Kids in Basketball Playoff

INDIANAPOLIS — Local community activists have arranged for a friendly game of basketball between inner city kids from District 17 and IMPD officers as a fundraiser for a Youth Gaming Center. The first annual Cops versus Kids Basketball Playoff will be held Saturday, April 22 from 6-9 p.m. at Brookside School 54, 3150 E. 10th St. (near Rivoli theatre). Admission to the event is $5 for adults and $3 for kids 6 and over; 5 and under are free. Family admission for up to five people is available for $15.
Jomo Cole, the event organizer, said, “Young people need positive interactions with the police. They also need a place where they can be involved in positive activities. This even allows for both, all while raising money for a good cause.”
The Circle City Gaming Center, one of the current objectives being explored in the Near Eastside Quality of Life Plans, was an idea Mr. Cole had to get kids off the streets. Kids from all around the Near Eastside will have access to the gaming center where they can socialize and play video games. They’ll “earn” playing time through good behavior and good grades.
“In our streets, the interaction between police and young people in our city is too often negative,” said City Council Vice President Zach Adamson. “This event, which we hope to be ongoing, gives our inner city community to interact with the police in a positive way.” Adamson represents District 17, which has seen too many acts of violence in the previous years. “Building positive interactions between police and community benefits both sides of the equation.”
City support for the event comes from the IMPD Chief of Police Bryan Roach. “This event for our youth and police officers allows us to see and feel that each other matter,” he said. “Events like this help bring fundamental change in the way we see our connection with, and obligation to, others.”