Using a data-driven, intelligence-based approach led to introducing a sector commander for each of the Denver RTD’s five sectors.  -  Photo: Denver RTD

Using a data-driven, intelligence-based approach led to introducing a sector commander for each of the Denver RTD’s five sectors.

Photo: Denver RTD

Denver’s Regional Transportation District (RTD) achieved a milestone in its Transit Police force by reaching 56 sworn officers in the agency’s department and another 21 recruits currently in police academy training.

RTD continues to hire officers for its Transit Police Department, with a goal to have 119 officers on staff by the end of 2024. In August 2022, the agency had 19 sworn officers.

Divide and Conquer

To deploy officers more strategically, RTD has divided its eight-county district into five sectors. RTD sector commanders were hired to address safety issues within their assigned sector and be a point of contact for municipalities and business and property owners to report problematic, non-emergency issues.

“When you call the police, you expect responsive and timely service,” said RTD Deputy Chief Glyn Horn.

The sector-policing approach “is a way of streamlining communication and, most importantly, ensures that the commanders responsible for that sector receive that information in a timely manner,” he added.

RTD offers a Sector Map on its Transit Police webpage for individuals to see which sector commander to contact for their location. The customer contact form will go directly to the sector commander assigned to the area and the RTD chief of police and emergency management.

“If you type in an address or station name, the respective commander’s picture will populate and a customer can send a complaint or acknowledgement directly to that commander,” said Horn.

Increasing RTD Safety

Using a data-driven, intelligence-based approach led to introducing a sector commander for each of the agency’s five sectors.

RTD has taken steps to better protect its bus operators by installing new safety shields in its bus fleet. To date, 150 buses have the new shields installed and 140 new buses are ready with pre-installed safety shields.

RTD also plans to add community outreach staff, staffing six mental health clinicians and five homeless outreach coordinators by yearend to work alongside Transit Police officers. The outreach program has fostered agency relationships to increase customer access to resources in the RTD service area while helping to keep service running smoothly.

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