Indianapolis Won't Pay $2M to 3 Survivors Who Say City Could Have Prevented FedEx Shooting

The city of Indianapolis denied on Monday a multimillion compensation request made by two victims of the FedEx shooting and one victim's family member after the victims said the city could have prevented the shooting from happening.

Attorneys for Harpreet Singh, Lakhwinder Kaur and Gurinder Bain sent the city a tort claim in October last year asking for $2.1 million in damages, or $700,000 for each person because all three had suffered "significant losses," The Indianapolis Star reported.

Brandon Scott Hole,19, killed eight employees at a FedEx factory in Indianapolis and injured five others during an act of "suicidal murder," according to police.

However, the city did not respond to the claim by the January 10 deadline which opens the possibility for the victims to file a lawsuit against the city. The Sikh Coalition said their lawyers do not plan on filing a lawsuit at this time.

The victims claimed that local officials could have prevented the shooting but didn't when they chose not to follow Indiana's red flag law when they didn't pursue a court case in March 2020 to take away Hole's gun rights after his mother warned police he was violent, armed and suicidal, the Star reported.

They claim if the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department and the Marion County prosecutor's office had filed a court petition against Hole, it potentially would have stopped him from purchasing the guns used in the shooting.

Brandon Scott Hole FedEx Shooting
Congressman Andre Carson (D-IN) gives a speech during a vigil to mourn the eight murdered FedEx Ground employees at Krannert Park on April 17, 2021 in Indianapolis, Indiana. A Marion County prosecutor said Hole did not receive a "red flag" hearing, something they would need to have done to convince a judge that Hole should not be allowed to possess a gun. Jon Cherry/Getty Images

Government agencies that receive such notices can agree to pay the victims or deny the request. The city's silence is the equivalent of a denial, which opens the door for victims to respond with a lawsuit.

The "red flag" legislation, which became law in Indiana in 2005, allows police or the courts to seize guns from people who show signs that they might be violent.

The lawyers said the law doesn't give the authorities discretion and that they must file such cases with the courts. Had such a case been filed, the mass shooting could have been prevented, according to the letter that serves as a tort claim notice, which precedes a formal lawsuit.

Hole, a former FedEx employee, was able to legally purchase the two rifles used in the shooting, even after his mother called police in March of 2020 to say her son might attempt "suicide by cop." Police seized a pump-action shotgun from Hole, then 18, when responding to his mother's call.

Marion County Prosecutor Ryan Mears has since faced sharp criticism for choosing not to pursue the red flag court hearing that could have prevented Hole from accessing the guns used in the April attack. Mears said shortly after the attack that prosecutors didn't pursue such a hearing because they didn't have enough time under the law to definitively demonstrate his propensity for suicidal thoughts.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Indianapolis Indiana FedEx mass shooting victims names
The City of Indianapolis denied a request for $2.1M from three victims of the FedEx shooting. Above, officials load a body into a vehicle at the site of the shooting in Indianapolis, Indiana, on April 16, 2021. Jeff Dean / AFP/Getty