INDIANAPOLIS | Hoosiers may soon get alerts on their televisions, radios, mobile phones and other devices if a police officer is killed, injured or missing in the line of duty and the perpetrator is on the lam.
The Indiana Senate voted 47-0 Monday for House Bill 1151, creating a Blue Alert program for endangered police officers modeled after the Amber Alert used to help find missing children.
"By keeping the public more informed, locals can pull together to help protect those who serve our cities and towns," said state Sen. Jim Arnold, D-LaPorte.
Under the plan, which now goes to the governor, the Indiana State Police would administer the Blue Alert program and decide, based on information provided by a local law enforcement agency, whether to issue an alert.
Participating broadcasters and electronic billboard operators would then display alert information the public could use to help identify and find a suspect or a missing police officer.
Arnold, a former LaPorte County sheriff, co-sponsored the House-approved legislation in the Senate with state Sen. Ron Grooms, R-Jeffersonville.
Indiana also administers a "Silver Alert" program for missing and endangered senior citizens.