City, County Officials Respond to Transient Problems - ABC FOX MONTANA NEWS, WEATHER, SPORTS - KTMF/KWYB

City, County Officials Respond to Transient Problems

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MISSOULA -

Throughout the summer, police have received reports of sexual assaults and other acts of violence in connection to the transient population in Missoula.

In recent weeks, police investigated a transient accused of raping two juvenile girls, and a report of a gang of transients assaulting another homeless man on the Kim Williams Trail.

Missoula County officials said they've also had to address some serious public health issues, due to the transient population.

Health officials said the Montana Department of Transportation just cleaned up a large, transient camp under the Reserve Street Bridge.

They said these kinds of large transient camps lack access to clean water, garbage disposal and restrooms.

Travis Ross, of the Missoula City-Co. Health Dept. said, "Leading to obvious problems with human waste accumulating, and lots of garbage accumulating, so particularly in the floodplain when we get high waters, a lot of that just washes downstream and impacts our surface waters -- our rivers and streams."

Health officials said the cleanup of the Reserve Street Bridge camp cost $17,000 -- a bill footed by taxpayers.

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