CTA signs another $30.9 million security contract with a focus on… turnstile jumpers

The CTA will pay a private security company $30.9 million over the next 18 months for “up to 100” unarmed security guards and 50 canines a day, the transit agency said today. That’s in addition to the $71 million contract that Chicago’s transit agency gave to a different security firm in April.

Teams from Action K-9 will be “deployed near station turnstiles to deter fare evasion and increase the overall security presence at stations,” according to CTA.

“CTA has been developing new ways to target fare theft and prevent fare evasion before it leads to other illicit activities,” the agency’s statement said.

At $56,000 a day, the teams will have to stop more than 22,000 turnstile jumpers a day to pay for themselves.

Each team will have two unarmed guards and one dog, whereas CTA’s canine security units previously had only one human with each canine, the agency said. The additional guard will allow teams to “better handle a variety of situations,” according to CTA.

About five weeks after CTA signed its $71 million deal with Monterrey Security in April, an Action K-9 executive went on WGN to pitch the idea of adding private security canine security patrols to increase security throughout the city.

“Our canines here are trained 10 times more than a regular security officer, 10 times,” said the company’s vice president of operations, Timothy Clancy.

“If you’re being assaulted, my dog can engage the bad guy,” Clancy told WGN. “Two, three, four unarmed guards, they cannot engage the bad guy.”

The contract with Action K-9 is the CTA’s latest attempt to lower the rate of violent crime, which has stayed high despite a number of plans and strategies announced by the CTA, the Chicago Police Department, and Mayor Lori Lightfoot.

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CWBChicago was created in 2013 by five residents of Wrigleyville and Boystown who had grown disheartened with inaccurate information that was being provided at local Community Policing (CAPS) meetings. Our coverage area has expanded since then to cover Lincoln Park, River North, The Loop, Uptown, and other North Side Areas. But our mission remains unchanged: To provide original public safety reporting with better context and greater detail than mainstream media outlets. Our editorial email address is news@cwbchicago.com