Aug 31, 2010 11:00 AM by Greg Boyce
The Colorado Springs Police Department says it has been able to help reduce crime in the downtown area with help from the military.
In February of 2008 officers began addressing a growing crime problem that peaked from 11 p.m. to 3 a.m. It was believed the increase in problems coincided with an increase in the number of military personnel in the area, as well as known gang members around the time bars close each night.
After meetings with bar owners and community groups, the Fort Carson Police/Provost Marshal Division started ride-alongs with police officers in the downtown entertainment district. The mere presence of the military personnel providing information and available resources helped police officers dealing with incidents involving military personnel. The benefit of a liaison with the military to address alternative means of accountability with military personnel was significant, according to police. Eventually a Fort Carson Police substation was opened at the Police Operations Center.
In 2008, the downtown entertainment district showed a reduction in calls for service by approximately 3 percent, compared to a departmental increase of approximately 7.60 percent. In 2009, the downtown entertainment district showed a reduction in calls for service of nearly 6 percent.