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BART Police Chief Vows Vigilance Regarding Passenger Safety

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BART Police Chief Kenton Rainey

BART Police Chief Kenton Rainey (bart.gov)

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OAKLAND (KCBS) – Bay Area Rapid Transit’s top cop said officers will continue to make arrests if necessary during any protests at the agency’s stations in the future.

BART Police Chief Kenton Rainey has made it clear that passenger safety is and always will be his first priority.

“If they (protesters) disrupt our service on the platform, we will be taking action,” he said.

KCBS’ Margie Shafer Reports:

He said that there are places to protest and places not to and this group of protesters know the rules that have been clearly outlined by the transit agency.

Krystof with the group No Justice, No BART said the protests will continue until they get their wish of disbanding the BART police force.

“We’re not saying that the trains should be a free-for-all. We’re saying that BART should not be running its own police department,” he said.

But BART Board of Directors President Bob Franklin supports the force, which operates throughout the Bay Area.

“We go through four counties and numerous cities so we can’t just have, when we cross county lines, a shift in jurisdictions,” said Franklin. “We need our BART police.”

BART is committed to creating a new cellphone policy where intentional cellphone service disruptions during protests would likely not occur, other than in extreme circumstances.

It was BART’s shutdown of cell service at several San Francisco stations earlier this month that has caught the ire of several groups, including “Anonymous.” That group has been the lead organizers of protests the last two Mondays that disrupted service for hours in downtown San Francisco.

(Copyright 2011 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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