Sat 10:56pm: City works to make bike trail safe

Coming Sunday…


WARREN — All was quiet a week ago when Nicholas Baldwin returned to the city leg of the Great Ohio Lake-to-River Greenway for the first time since he reported being attacked on the bike trail last month.

This time, the 27-year-old Mineral Ridge man walked the trail with his parents and Warren City Councilman John Brown.

“It was hard for him, but I think he just wanted to go back for some closure,” remarked his dad, Dennis. “But I don’t think hell try to ride through there again.”

The Oct. 12 afternoon assault renewed concerns about safety along the Warren portion of the bike trail.

Last week, Brown, who regularly rides the trail, met with city police officials about plans to increase police presence along the Warren portion.

“Most of the time it’s very quiet. There are times you can be riding and you don’t see anyone. I would like that to change. I’d like to see more people using it,” Brown said.

About a dozen Warren City police officers have been trained for the department’s new bike patrol unit. Warren police Chief Eric Merkel said there are plans underway for the bike patrol to spend some of its time policing the bike trail.

“It’s definitely what we’ve had in mind as we move forward,” Merkel said.

He said crime along the bike trail isn’t any more prevalent than in other parts of the city.