Metro ramps up police presence

Now that summer vacation is over, Metro riders can expect to see more students, as well as police officers, during their weekday commute.

Since Washington-area students returned to classes, police presence around Metrorail and buses has increased to prevent any unruly behavior that may come from minors.

Metro spokeswoman Cathy Asato said more officers from the Metro Transit Police Department would be stationed on the Metro mainly in the afternoon, between 3 and 4 p.m.

“The extra security has been mostly implemented at the large stations where kids tend to congregate, like Tenleytown and Minnesota Avenue,” Asato said.

Officers are distributing business cards for a hotline passengers can call to report bad behavior – whether it be students fighting, loitering or not following other Metro rules.

Safety is the top priority for students and all riders, MTPD Chief Michael Taborn said in a Metro news release.

Robberies near GW’s campus involving juveniles were reported throughout the summer. In July a Metropolitan Police sergeant told Foggy Bottom residents that robberies occurred in the area due to its proximity to the Metro station.

A Foggy Bottom-GWU Metrorail station manager said two to three MTPD officers come into the station several times a day, usually during the peak commuting hours in the morning and evening.

Despite more students coming through Foggy Bottom since School Without Walls reopened, the station manager said there hasn’t been an increase in security, and he added that it was not needed.

Instead of high school students being a problem, the manager said it is college students who are being disruptive.

“The worst is Thursday, Friday and Saturday – college kids trying to slide down the escalators because they’re drunk,” he said.

Metro riders interviewed around GW’s station had varied experiences with students on Metrorail, with some hardly noticing them or an increased police presence, while others have seen groups of 10 students or more acting inappropriately by yelling and wrestling.

Najee Braboy, a School Without Walls student and daily commuter on Metro, said he never notices any rowdy high school students at the Foggy Bottom station.

Metro passengers can report disruptive behavior by minors by calling 202-962-2118.

Thomas Boyd contributed to this report.

The Hatchet has disabled comments on our website. Learn more.