March 8, 2012
Some days, it would be easy to mistake the Metro Taxi dispatch center in Denver for a police station. Traffic and crime incidents are recorded in a special logbook, as drivers call in descriptions and locations to police.
It’s part of a program called Taxis on Patrol. Just a day after the program began, a cab driver helped police make an arrest for a fatal hit-and-run. In the months since, eyewitness calls from cabbies using a bulletin system similar to an Amber Alert have led to hundreds of arrests.
“They’re in places at times in which police officers aren’t,” says Larry Stevenson, the cab company’s communications manager. “We have assaults, we have domestic violences being reported, we have hit-and-runs, we have drunk drivers.”