Saturday, August 01, 2009

Suspended Officer Jason Barber Faces More Charges

A suspended Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department officer who already faced charges of selling a handgun to a felon was arrested Thursday on accusations that he beat a Hancock County man in April.

Jason Barber, 32, was held in the Hancock County Jail in Greenfield on felony battery charges, Sheriff's Department Maj. Joe Hunt said.

Barber had been a narcotics officer before his suspension in June 2008, which came after Barber was charged in Marion County with selling a handgun to convicted burglar who had been a confident informant.

Barber was arrested on the Hancock County charge about 4:30 p.m. Thursday at a strip club in Indianapolis, Hunt said.

Court documents allege Barber used a police baton to beat a man April 26, Hunt said. Barber wore a police badge and a gun when he knocked on the victim's door, Hunt said.

Hunt said Barber struck the victim, who was not identified, in the head with an expandable baton.

The victim stood up and began fighting with the attacker. Hunt said three other men assisted in beating the victim.

The victim's son opened the door to sic the family's 240-pound mastiff dog on the attackers. The men fled and drove away in a gold Ford Taurus, Hunt said.

The victim later identified his main attacker as Jason Barber, Hunt said. Police have made no other arrests, and the case remains under investigation, Hunt said.

Barber's bond was set at $10,000. He is expected to appear for an initial hearing today in Hancock Superior Court.

In Marion County, Barber is accused of selling a .25-caliber handgun to a confidential informant for $110 in March 2008. The informant, Corey Smith, 30, had provided Barber and other officers with information on narcotics cases. Smith died in November of an accidental drug overdose.

On Thursday, a judge revoked Barber's bond in connection with the Marion County charges.
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