Accosted by ‘spare change’ artists? ‘Aggressive panhandling’ law is there to be enforced
Although statistics don't show it, panhandling is becoming a growing problem in Old Colorado City, according to some
One shop owner described a recent encounter in which a couple of transients approached her in one of the parking lots, asking her for money in an aggressive manner, and she said she felt intimidated by the experience.
She never reported the incident to the police, because the perpetrators were long gone.
However, police should be told, even in cases where they have little chance of apprehending the criminals, according to James Barrentine, crime prevention officer with the Colorado Springs Police Department's Gold Hill Division. Speaking to the May 25 board meeting of the Old Colorado City Security & Maintenance District, he noted that a city ordinance has made “aggressive panhandling” a crime under city ordinance 9.2.111. This includes soliciting near an ATM machine, at vehicles, anytime after dark or when people have already declined.
In addition, Barrentine said reporting crimes lets the PD know there's a problem, so that police can consider staffing the area more heavily.