MAPLEWOOD, Mo. – Another homicide on the MetroLink train has left some riders shaken, but not completely deterred from riding.
“It’s only getting worse,” said John Avery, a Valley Park resident.
MetroLink riders see and encounter just about everything.
“I’ve seen fights on the trains,” Avery said. “I’ve seen fights on the platforms.”
Bob rides the train to and from work every day.
“The security at times is always here in the morning and the afternoons,” he said. “But when I think there is more trouble, they are not quite as visible.”
On Monday, several riders all agreed on one thing, more police on trains would deter crime.
“When you’re on the train and people don’t see law enforcement, they think it’s time to party,” said Demetrius Collins. “But when they see law enforcement, everyone is going to act like they are civilized.”
However, on Saturday, police were on the train when two men exchanged gunfire, and one was left dead near the Maplewood-Manchester MetroLink station. The gunman was charged and arrested shortly after the shooting. Perhaps the next security answer is found in Bi-State Development’s $52 million plan that would add 60 gates and turnstiles to all 38 MetroLink stations. A plan some are skeptical of.
“That would be a deterrent, but I think they could hop the turnstiles too,” one rider said.
“You’re going to need more enforcement,” Collins said. “People are still going to find ways around it.”
Bob said he’s had altercations while using the trains and buses but said he won’t stop riding because he wants to support public transit.
“I really like the train,” he said. “I want to use mass transit, so I get a monthly pass and use that.”
Bi-State Development plans to add those 60 turnstiles and gates by the end of next year.