Jason Brown, the Indianapolis man found guilty of murder in the shooting death of a Southport police officer in 2017, has been sentenced to serve 55 years in the Indiana Department of Correction, bringing an end to the trial court phase of a case that began with the prosecution seeking the death penalty.
Marion Superior Judge Mark Stoner sentenced Brown for the death of Southport police Lt. Aaron Allan on Friday. Three years of Brown’s 58-year sentence have been suspended, so the defendant will serve an executed sentence of 55 years.
“The sentence imposed today provides finality to the criminal matter and our thoughts remain with Stacy, the family, and the Southport Police Department during this difficult time,” Marion County Prosecutor Ryan Mears said in a statement. “We will continue to honor the legacy and sacrifice of Lt. Aaron Allan.”
However, Brown’s attorney, Denise Turner, said her client will be appealing the conviction and sentencing. The defense did not deny that Brown shot Allan, but they argued their client was suffering from a traumatic brain injury at the time of the incident.
“I think the trial and the sentencing was not about legal guilt,” Turner said. “I think it was about being held accountable. … Judge Stoner made clear in his sentencing statement that he acknowledges all of things that Jason has been through … he’s had multiple brain injuries. So (the judge) knew all of those things and so that’s why I think this was not about legal guilt. This was about holding Jason accountable for what happened.”
Brown was injured in a single-car accident in July 2017. As he was dangling upside down in his overturned car, Allan crawled in the vehicle to help. Moments later, Brown shot Allan 11 times, fatally wounding the police officer.
The sentencing hearing began a little after 8 a.m. May 6, with the defense arguing for the minimum of 45 years and the prosecution arguing for the maximum of 65 years. The advisory sentence was 55 years.
“It was a hard day,” Turner said. “(Brown) had a hard time and I’m trying to encourage him that we have issues for appeal and we’re not done fighting.”