Cyclists, runners 'Take Back the Trail'
DURHAM (WTVD) -- Citizens came together to "take back" the Durham section of the American Tobacco Trail Wednesday evening after about a dozen attacks within the past year.
Durham resident joined police Wednesday evening as they walked and rode bikes on the trail.
"This is the way to do it," said cyclist Robert Walpole. "Get the people out on the trails and be present. Don't stay at home, that's the worst thing to do."
City police are encouraging more people to use the trail to scare off criminals. It's caused Liz Moffitt and her friends to take precautions.
"It's definitely causing us to be a lot more alert," said Moffitt. "We ride, wear bright colors. We got lights for our bikes."
Mac Kendall said people can't be afraid to use the popular Durham trail.
"We need to show people that we are not afraid, come out support the trail and use it," said Kendall. "And the more people we can get out here using it, I think the effect will be a positive one and we'll be able to protect each other."
Durham Police Chief Jose Lopez said he's working with residents to make the trail safer.
"The reality is it's not going to be the police trail, but the citizens' trail," said Lopez. "And as such, we're going to need to have collaboration between the community and the police in order to maintain this trail as safe as any other trail in the United States."
Lopez wouldn't say how many officers usually patrol the trail. However, police are also considering cameras, more lights, and call boxes along the trail.
durham county, local/state, steve dorsey
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