Early morning robbery marks first major crime on Monon Trail since new hours

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (August 10, 2015)- A robbery early Sunday morning marked the first major crime on the Monon Trail since the parks new extended hours.

Indianapolis Metropolitan Police said the robbery happened at the trail's 61st Street entrance. Investigators say two men were walking along the trail around 3:30 Sunday morning when they were approached by two other men sitting in a car. Police say the suspects demanded the victims give them whatever they had. The victims reported the suspects had what looked like a handgun. One victim was punched in the face and another was tackled to the ground. The suspects got away with the victims cell phone.

In June, Indy Parks and Recreation voted to extend Indy Greenways hours, including The Monon Trail. The trail is now open 24/7.

Avid trail users say they don't agree with the extended hours.

"I warn my kids to not come out here alone, but I do myself, so it’s sometimes scary. I stay away from dusk and early mornings just for that reason," said Heidi Nightingale.

Other trail users said the extended hours haven't played a factor in crime and believe suspects would still try to target people using and living near the trail.

“A Friday or Saturday night at 3:00 in the morning, you don’t want to be anywhere near here," said Bill Marciniak.

Police have not named any suspects in the attack this Sunday. There were no surveillance cameras in the area of the robbery.

IMPD provided a list of ways to keep you safe on the trail.

  • Walk or bike in pairs; don't walk alone
  • Be attentive and aware of your surroundings; don’t be distracted, i.e. cell phones
  • Don’t wear a headset
  •  Wear bright or reflective colored clothing and carry a noisemaker
  • Tell friends or family the route you’ll be taking
  •  Avoid unfamiliar areas on the trail alone
  •  Keep valuables such as cell phones and wallets hidden
  •  Enable GPS on mobile phones
  •  See something say something
  •   Report call boxes that are inoperable to the Mayors Action Center via mobile app or (317) 327-4MAC.
  •    If approached on the trail by a suspect be cooperative and not combative