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APD shuts down Red River patrol

Tuesday, September 29, 2020 by Elizabeth Pagano

A program that stationed two public safety officers at Red River and Seventh streets has ended, according to a Sept. 28 memo that Austin Police Chief Brian Manley sent to City Council members. Manley explains that the officers were stationed around-the-clock “with the intent of restoring a sense of security and safety for residents, employees, tourists, music goers and other individuals in the area.” However, during the period the program was in place, from October 2019-April 2020, APD did not see a higher level of crime in that area as compared to other parts of downtown. The memo concludes, “Officers are most effective in providing a sense of security and well-being when they are able to freely move about their assigned area, interacting with downtown residents, visitors and business owners. Stationing officers at a particular intersection would limit that effectiveness. Therefore, APD recommends this request be closed, with the understanding that downtown officers will continue to pay special attention to the Red River and 7th Street area.”

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