Lawrence police investigate June 4 park shooting


The Lawrence Police Department is investigating a June 4 shooting that injured three people at Lawrence Community Park.

Deputy Chief Gary Woodruff said the incident took place at around 10:15 p.m. during a large gathering comprising people in the late teens to early 20s. 

“What created the circumstances remains very much under investigation,” he said. “But at some point, someone started firing shots and it resulted in three individuals being struck by gunfire.”

Two had grazing-type wounds, Woodruff said, and were treated on site. The third, an adult female, was struck in the thigh. She was transported to a local hospital for treatment of a non-life-threatening wound.

Woodruff said more than one handgun was involved in the shooting, and more than 100 shots were fired. He asked that anyone with information about the incident call 317-262-TIPS. 

He addressed the incident during a June 5 town hall meeting with residents. He said recently appointed LPD Chief Curtis Bigsbee led a command meeting that day, and authorized officer overtime to patrol “hot spots” in the community, 

Woodruff stressed that Lawrence is very safe, overall. 

“What happened in Lawrence Park is disturbing,” he said. “We take it seriously. It is unacceptable that an incident like that visited itself on our community.”

Woodruff said that officers can’t be everywhere at once, and he asked citizens to help by reporting anything out of the ordinary. 

“If you see something, say something. It’s a cliche, but it works,” he said.

Woodruff said even if you’re not sure, it’s better to call the police and have them check it out.

“Maybe just seeing a police car roll through the neighborhood will prevent something from happening,” he said, adding that the response time for Lawrence police is impressive.

Woodruff was the Lawrence police chief until late May, when Bigsbee was appointed as his successor. After 40 years in law enforcement, Woodruff is planning to retire and recommended then-Deputy Chief Bigsbee for the job.