INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – An Indianapolis man says he was robbed and beaten along the Monon Trail around midnight Wednesday.
They say the Monon is one of the safest areas in the city, but the attack overnight does provide an important reminder that no place is safe from crime.
“I mean I`ve lived here a long time and always used the trail and it`s always been safe,” said a trail user named John. “I know some bad stuff can sometimes happen on it, but it`s a public park so things are gonna happen.”
Trail users like John are surprised to hear that overnight, on the stretch of the Monon in Broad Ripple, a man claims he was ambushed by a thief.
The victim said he passed out after being kicked in the head and the suspect stole his bike.
IMPD says that sort of crime is extremely rare.
“The Monon Trail is safe. I want to be clear about that. Throughout the year we may have 5 or 6 incidents that occur, most of the time it`s really late at night,” said IMPD Commander Christopher Bailey.
Last month, IMPD held a meeting to emphasize safety along the Monon.
The department does use bike patrols on the trail during daylight hours. Still, police never recommend people use the trail alone at dark, as the victim did in this case.
“The trails are open 24 hours. We get that. There are precautions you can take and one is not walk the trail alone,” said Bailey.
“I was running 8 miles both ways. You know you gotta be safe wherever you go, but I always felt safe here. There’s always someone else walking, running or biking around me,” said runner Haleigh Hanson.
Hanson routinely uses the trail to train for half marathons and says she has never felt threatened.
Most people feel the same way.
“You just have to be safe wherever you are, you know,” said Hanson.
Police say if people use the trails during the day and they’re not alone, their odds of falling victim are close to zero, but as always people have be aware of their surroundings.