Mapleton Police stepping up patrols along popular trail due to vehicles, target shooters

MAPLETON –The Mapleton Parkway Trail is getting a lot of foot traffic, and police are worried about safety because of people who shoot targets or drive vehicles nearby.

“It's been a mild winter, so a lot of people have been out. Now that the weather is getting warmer, we're getting more people on bikes, walking,” said Sgt. Tony Kropf with the Mapleton Police Department.

The downside is people are also driving cars and ATVs on the trail, which is prohibited.

“One of the complications we have with that is it's still wet, it's still muddy," Kropf said. "As we get vehicles traveling across the trail and on the trail, they're dragging mud, rocks to the trail."

Another safety concern is people who are target shooting in nearby gravel pits, just steps away from the trail.

“They're setting their targets up facing the hillside, not knowing that there's a trail that's accessing pedestrians,” Kropf said. "There's TVs, all kinds of things people bring to shoot and don't take it with them."

For years, target shooting in this area near 4000 South and SR-89 has been legal, but now that the trail is within city limits, it’s no longer allowed.

Police are trying to educate the public, and plan to post more signs. But when it comes to shooting and driving vehicles near the trail, there’s zero tolerance.

“The trail was developed for a safe way for people to exercise and to be out and about without being in the roads," Kropf said. "Now the road is coming to them."

Police are working with nearby property owners near the gravel pits so that if you are caught trespassing you will be cited.