As more people begin using the Atlanta Beltline walk and bike path, Mayor Kasim Reed said it is necessary to take extra steps to keep crime in that area under control.
Using $1.8 million in federal money, Reed announced Friday morning the formation of the Path Force Unit. The group is made up of 15 officers dedicated solely to patrolling the Beltline.
"I don't know how this could be anything but a positive thing," said Mayor Reed. "It is a federal city partnership, putting police officers to work."
The federal money comes with the condition that all officers hired for the task force must have been active in the U.S. Military for at least six consecutive months since Sept. 11, 2001. Atlanta Police spokesman Carlos Campos said they hired 15 new officers who are military veterans, and sent them straight to their police academy. Meanwhile, the new unit for the Beltline consists of officers already with tenure in the Atlanta Police, but who also served in the military prior to joining the force.
"Crime follows where people are, and we are going to send officers where people are experiencing problems and cover the entire trail," said Reed.
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Tuesday, April 20 2010 11:21 PM EDT2010-04-21 03:21:00 GMT
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