An Indiana prison official admitted that the suspect in the shooting of an Indianapolis police officer might never have been on the streets if either of two crucial steps had been taken after a previous arrest, reports the Indianapolis Star. Mistake one: The Indiana Department of Correction failed to enter the parole status of Thomas X. Hardy, 60, into a law enforcement database.
If it had, jail officials would have known Hardy was on parole when he was arrested Nov. 19 on felony theft charges. Mistake two: Parole officers are supposed to perform regular checks of the database to determine whether parolees have been arrested. Indianapolis jail officials had entered the November arrest, but his parole officer hadn't checked the database. A corrections department spokesman said that if state officials had known that Hardy was jailed last month — either by being contacted by the jail or noticing the arrest in the database — officials likely would have asked the jail to keep him in custody until a parole board could review his case. Instead, he was freed after posting $15,000 bail on Dec. 21.