TOPS is a Partnership with Denver Police to Increase Reports of Crimes in Progress and Provide Eyewitness Accounts
Today, with the goal of enhancing the safety of people who live, work and play in Denver, Metro Taxi, Freedom Cab, Union Taxi Cooperative and Yellow Cab re-launched the Taxis on Patrol (TOPS) program.
TOPS, started in Denver by Metro Taxi in 2011, encourages taxi drivers to be on the lookout for suspicious or illegal activity while providing transportation services throughout Denver and the Metro area, and to quickly report those issues to police.
The TOPS program experienced near-immediate success when just 24 hours after implementation a Metro Taxi driver witnessed a hit-and-run collision that killed a valet attendant outside of a Denver nightclub. The taxi driver followed the suspect vehicle, noted its license plate number and called police, which resulted in the suspect driver’s arrest. The death of valet attendant Jose Medina, and the taxi driver’s commendable actions, later resulted in Colorado creating the Medina Alert system to help catch hit-and-run drivers.
“Police simply can’t be everywhere at all times, so the goal of TOPS is for the hundreds of drivers who are on duty 24/7 to be extra eyes and ears on the streets,” said Robert McBride, Executive Vice President/Managing Director of Metro Taxi. “Our drivers are an integral part of this community and see TOPS as a way to give back and make our city an even safer place.”
The Denver Police Department is creating a training video for participating drivers to help them to be good witnesses, and to do so safely – encouraging drivers not to physically intervene and/or put themselves in a dangerous situation.
“The Denver Police Department and I greatly appreciate these taxi companies and drivers for stepping up to make a difference in public safety,” said Chief of Police Robert C. White. “A timely, detailed report of suspicious activity or a crime in progress can sometimes be the difference in officers arresting a suspect, rather than them getting away, and may even result in officers being able to intervene before a crime is committed.”
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