SEPTA Debuts New Transit Police Unit - New York News

SEPTA Debuts New Transit Police Unit

Posted: Updated:
PHILADELPHIA -

A new unit with the SEPTA Transit Police hit the streets today. The unit will put officers in places where they think crimes will be committed before they happen. Hotspots include on the buses, rails, and subways.

Crime on SEPTA is a reality for riders.

"I've been robbed before on the L," says Maura Stein of Northeast Philadelphia.

"I don't ride at night. Too much stuff be happening," says Nathaniel Williams of North Philadelphia.

But SEPTA is taking a new step to crack down on transit crime, putting cops where they think crimes will be committed. The anti-crime unit is made up of 26 officers. They're focus: policing different hot zones that change daily. These are places with upticks of crimes in a short amount of time.

"If there's a problem in a certain area. And the next day we'll target the problem in the next area," says Lt. Nichole Lawson of SEPTA Transit Police.

Police, some uniformed, most undercover, may be on a bus in North Philly one day, and then the subway the next.

In it's inaugural patrol, SEPTA police concentrated on the Route 3 bus in North Philadelphia. On Friday and Saturday, there were numerous reports of fare jumpers and cell phone thefts. Today, uniformed and undercover cops rode the route all day, targeting criminals.

"The officers usually stay in their zones and target problems they have and if they need assistance we can help them," says Lt. Lawson.

Most passengers we spoke with are happy to see police concentrating on areas of higher crime.

"I guess having a lot of police in the area is a good thing. But I think if they come after the fact may be too late," says a passenger.

SEPTA says crime statistics show if a crime happens today. chances are it will happen again in the same area.

"We're here. You might not see us in uniform but we're here in plain clothes," says Lt. Lawson. "If you want to commit a crime you are going to get caught."

After one day in operation, SEPTA tells me their unit already made arrests. In fact, five were made in the first hour alone.

  • Local NewsMore>>

  • Man Dies Following Parachute Jump In South Jersey

    Man Dies Following Parachute Jump In South Jersey

    Monday, April 21 2014 7:19 AM EDT2014-04-21 11:19:43 GMT
    A parachute jump goes terribly wrong in South Jersey. A skydiver dies after what police describe as a problem with his wingsuit.
    A parachute jump goes terribly wrong in South Jersey. A skydiver dies after what police describe as a problem with his wingsuit.
  • Student Sexually Assaulted At West Chester University

    Student Sexually Assaulted At West Chester University

    Student Sexually Assaulted At West Chester University

    Monday, April 21 2014 7:18 AM EDT2014-04-21 11:18:39 GMT
    Students and parents are on edge after a sexual assault was reported to the University Department of Public Safety on Saturday, April 19th at 2:28 a.m.According to campus police, the assault occurred in a residence on campus. Police say the victim did not know the attacker."It's kind of scary because obviously it shouldn't be happening," student Kate Luff said. "There's security guards so I mean they had to have gotten signed in or lived in the building."Other studentsare just as shocked."Tha...
    Students and parents are on edge after a sexual assault was reported to the University Department of Public Safety on Saturday, April 19th at 2:28 a.m.According to campus police, the assault occurred in a residence on campus. Police say the victim did not know the attacker."It's kind of scary because obviously it shouldn't be happening," student Kate Luff said. "There's security guards so I mean they had to have gotten signed in or lived in the building."Other studentsare just as shocked."Tha...
  • One Year After Marathon Bombings, Runners Return To Boston

    One Year After Marathon Bombings, Runners Return To Boston

    Monday, April 21 2014 7:01 AM EDT2014-04-21 11:01:22 GMT
    One year after the explosions, 36,000 runners return to Boston. See how the city is securing the site.
    One year after the explosions, 36,000 runners return to Boston. See how the city is securing the site.
  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • Skydiver dies after crashing into NJ backyard

    Skydiver dies after crashing into NJ backyard

    Monday, April 21 2014 10:23 AM EDT2014-04-21 14:23:02 GMT
    A 49-year-old sky diver from Brooklyn died after crashing into the backyard of a home in New Jersey. According to officials, Arkady Shenker wore a specialized parachute during the jump. Shenker was known to be an experienced skydiver who had more than 300 jumps under his belt.
    A 49-year-old sky diver from Brooklyn died after crashing into the backyard of a home in New Jersey. According to officials, Arkady Shenker wore a specialized parachute during the jump. Shenker was known to be an experienced skydiver who had more than 300 jumps under his belt.
  • Easter Bunny train sparks New Jersey brush fires

    Easter Bunny train sparks New Jersey brush fires

    Fire officials say several small brush fires were ignited by a train carrying the Easter Bunny in northwestern New Jersey.
    A train carrying the Easter Bunny in northwestern New Jersey has ignited several small brush fires.
  • Cops: 73-year-old man shoots neighbor in dispute

    Cops: 73-year-old man shoots neighbor in dispute

    Monday, April 21 2014 7:37 AM EDT2014-04-21 11:37:28 GMT
    A 73-year-old Connecticut man will be appearing before a state judge after being charged with shooting his neighbor three times during an argument on Easter morning.
    A 73-year-old Connecticut man will be appearing before a state judge after being charged with shooting his neighbor three times during an argument on Easter morning.
Powered by WorldNow
Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices