LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - One week after TARC announced more police officers would be onboard buses the company already put the plan into action. But TARC's executive director won't reveal how many, on which routes or how TARC plans to pay for their services.
"We're gonna do what it takes to make people feel safe," TARC Executive Director J. Barry Barker said on Thursday. Barker confirmed off-duty Louisville Metro officers, Jefferson County deputies and Corrections officers have already been assigned to provide security on several buses.
"I won't say how many, because I don't want the bad guys knowing what the number is," he said.
But he knows that he will have to scrounge to pay for them. "We haven't figured out where that money is coming from," Barker conceded. "We just know this is money we need to spend."
Metro Council member David James (D-District 6) agreed, though he too, offered no firm dollar figures.
"I do know that there should be officers on the buses," said James, who participated in a ride-along on several routes last week. "And the buses should be safe."
"They should have at least, I think, two officers-one in the front and one in the back," said Tiara Adams, who has been a TARC rider for four years. While it may seem like a lot of officers and a lot of money, Adams said, "but there's a lot of people getting hurt too."
TARC will have to find ways to add security without cutting service, Barker said. "We'll be hiring as needed. I tend to prefer they be in uniform, so that people can see that they're there and respond accordingly."
"If you're in uniform, you won't find nothing," Adams said. "They (troublemakers) just go somewhere else."
TARC may station officers at bus stops or have them follow buses as well.
"We're trying to surprise the bad guys," Barker said. If they predict where we're at, they're just simply gonna walk around us. We're gonna make sure we get 'em."
Adams said she plans to continue limiting her rides until she feels more secure, "If I don't go to work, I'm not getting on the bus. I'll get a ride."
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