The family of an Indianapolis man accused of murdering a police officer is saying that the tragedy could have been avoided if the officer had remained in his vehicle instead of confronting the suspect who was armed with a semiautomatic rifle, WISHTV reports.
Major Davis Jr., 25, was brandishing what Indianapolis police referred to as a “assault rifle” on the corner of a city street last Saturday night when officer Perry Renn approached Davis and requested that he drop his weapon.
Davis, a father of four children all under the age of 10, allegedly refused that command and a gunfight erupted that left Davis critically wounded and Renn deceased.
Shortly after, Davis was taken to a local hospital where he survived his gunshot wounds. He is now on life support in the the hospital’s intensive care unit.
News of the shootout caught Davis’ family and friends completely by surprise, as they believe he is a good man.
“I’ve never known him to be violent in any kind of way,” Yvonne Moorman, a family friend and the aunt of Davis’ fiancé, told the Indy Star. “Major was overall a good guy. He was a good dad.”
Prior to this most recent run-in with the law, Davis’s record showed no felonies and a single conviction for possession of marijuana.
Pam Moorman, the mother of Davis’s fiancé, believes that the family’s history with Indianapolis police could play a factor in why things went south so quickly on Saturday night.
“You don’t know what he been through with IMPD. We do. He’s scarred for life,” said Pam Moornan.
“He wasn’t a bad person. His father was killed by IMPD. That is enough to hurt a person and scar him for life,” explained Pam Moornan.
Major Davis Sr. died of a heart attack in 2003 after being arrested for public intoxication. According to the autopsy, the heart attack was induced by “physical exertion” during the arrest as Davis Sr. resisted the officers.
Before his death in 2003, Davis Sr. had spent three years in prison on a drug related conviction. Davis Jr. was 14 years old when he lost his father.
The family worries that Davis kids will also grow up without a father.
“I already know he’ll probably never get to come back home,” Pam Moorman said, knowing that if he recovers from the injuries he is likely to face a murder charge for fatally shooting Renn. “We already lost him.”
The Moorman’s expressed sympathy for the slain officer and his family but also said that the shooting could have been avoided if Renn opted to stay in his car since he could see that Davis had a gun.
“He [Renn] took a chance with Major,” Yvonne Moorman said. “He gave him the benefit of the doubt, and he lost his life. They asked Major to put the gun down. That to me was giving him the benefit of the doubt.”