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Family demands answers after unarmed motorist shot dead by Indy police

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- An Indianapolis man died Thursday morning after being shot by police and his family wants to know why, reports CBS Indianapolis affiliate WTTV.

The deadly incident officer involved shooting took place around 2 o'clock on the city's near northwest side.

Police say it started with a routine traffic stop, with the driver leading officers on a high-speed chase before crashing near an intersection.

At some point following that crash, two officers shot and killed the driver, identified as 45-year-old Aaron Bailey.

Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department Chief Bryan Roach didn't come out and openly defend his officers when he addressed reporters later Thursday, but he didn't say they were in the wrong.

The chief said he didn't have enough information to know whether the shooting was justified.

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Aaron Bailey in undated family photo WTTV

"This is something every city, police chief and mayor hopes never happens, but it has happened here in Indianapolis," Roach said.

He said no weapon was found inside Bailey's car, adding the department's policy is clear on when officers have the right to use deadly force.

"All I know is that, at some point, to be within policy, the officers had to be in fear for their life. So there had to be something that was done in to trigger that mindset in our officers," Roach said.

Bailey's daughter told WTTV she's heartbroken and confused. "I want justice and I want answers," she said. "My father didn't deserve this. I wasn't there. There's three sides to every story - there's his side, the police side and God's side. But the truth will come out."

Robert Polk, who owns much of the property around where the shooting happened, told the station that, while he has concerns, he wouldn't criticize police just yet for how they responded.

"If someone is running from the police, how do they know what the driver does or doesn't have?" Polk remarked.

"You got two sides of the story. The guy didn't have a gun," Polk said.

A 26-year-old female passenger, Shiwanda Ward, was taken into custody on drug related charges. She wasn't hurt in the shooting.

Chief Roach promised to be open and transparent about the department's investigation.

"This is an opportunity to increase the trust the community has for us. Everybody is watching," he said.

The two officers involved in the shooting weren't hurt.

Roach said he thinks the officers will have to go before grand jury to see if charges will be filed.

In the meantime, they will remain on routine leave while the case is being investigated.

Mayor Joe Hogsett also offered a written statement: "The loss of any life in our city is a tragedy, and my thoughts and prayers are with all individuals and families affected by last night's incident. Our residents expect that IMPD will stringently follow protocol by fully investigating and reviewing the actions that were taken. We will continue to engage local faith and community leaders to reiterate a commitment to handling this process with openness, transparency, and compassion."

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