DENVER (KDVR) — The FOX31 Problem Solvers spent hours riding RTD rails and bus lines Monday, following up on an announced plan to move more officers on board.

The news crew rode buses and trains in and out of Union Station to see if the RTD plan to restructure its forces could be spotted. Read RTD’s description of the plan at the bottom of this story.

How RTD safety plan looks on downtown Denver trains, buses

Around 10:30 a.m., the Problem Solvers started by taking multiple trips on the16th Street Free MallRide, where a concerned viewer and wife of a driver says a police presence is desperately needed.

Problem Solvers saw a contracted security guard on one of four mall line rides.

Another viewer told the Problem Solvers he commutes on the E line daily and has reported drug use on board. Monday morning, he did not see an officer present on his train.

After arriving to Union Station, the Problem Solvers checked cars on multiple E and W lines. On one of the lunchtime E lines out of Union Station, two officers rode on board.

In and outside the bus terminal and pavilions at Union Station, the Problem Solvers spotted a heightened police and security presence Monday. 

Around 12:45 p.m., RTD Interim Chief of Police and Emergency Management Steve Martingano confirmed Problem Solvers video captured a man summonsed and released for narcotics use.

To assist the transit police teams in combatting unwelcome activities on RTD property and vehicles, customers and employees are encouraged to download and use the Transit Watch app or dial RTD security dispatch at 303-299-2911.

RTD’s plan to address safety

Here is how RTD describes its safety plan:

Commencing Sunday, April 3, 2022, RTD’s Transit Police Division (TPD) will begin to restructure its forces into four patrol-specific teams. This restructuring effort will allow each team to focus and channel their efforts within their respective areas of responsibility.

Interim Chief of Police and Emergency Management Steve Martingano will be assigning transit police officers and contracted security personnel to one of the four teams:

• Bus Impact Team
• Rail Impact Team
• Mental Health and Homeless Outreach Impact Team
• Community Engagement Impact Team

Ranking RTD police officers for each team will:

• Manage the administration, scheduling, and operations of their respective teams, which will also be comprised of Allied Universal security personnel and secondary employment officers from local jurisdictions (currently Denver, Aurora, and Thornton, with additional jurisdictions participating in the near future)
• Develop action plans
• Review incident reports and determine deployment adjustments based on incident data
• Respond to customer service complaints for specific locations
• Coordinate with Bus and Rail Operations, as well as local mental health providers
• Develop, in coordination with Communications team and local stakeholders, outreach events and recruitment plans

RTD