Community Transit CEO Response to Sunday's Shooting

From: Ric Ilgenfritz <>
Sent: Thursday, March 11, 2021 
Subject: Response to Sunday’s Tragedy

Greetings Community Transit Colleagues,

I want to provide you with an update on the status and steps we are taking in response to last Sunday’s tragic shooting event.

We are supporting Everett Police with whatever they need as they wrap up their investigation. Several media outlets have made requests for the on-board video of the incident. We are required to release the video, and it will be going out today. We expect this will generate more media coverage. 

With that in mind, I want to let you know what we are doing to address the incident:

Support employees involved. I have spoken with several employees most closely involved in this event, including our coach operator, who was thankfully not injured. If you helped to support the response to this situation, I want to thank you for your compassion and professionalism. In the many conversations I have had, one overarching theme emerges – that everyone responding to that event did so with the upmost level of professionalism, care and commitment to one another and our customers.  Everything from the training and procedures to employee support and communications resulted in an effective response to this very difficult event. Thank you.

Increased security visibility. Operationally, Transit Police Unit deputies are placing added focus on patrolling the Swift Blue line, making stops at platforms for increased visibility and to check in with coach operators. Deputies are specifically checking in with coach operators, asking how things were going and if they were seeing any problems on the coach. The main focus of these actions is to ensure dialogue with the coach operators after the incident Sunday night. This will give drivers a chance to talk and know they are supported. 

Increased supervisor presence. Beginning Monday, Steve Kim, our chief operating officer, has asked transportation supervisors to increase their presence on our Swift Blue line so that they can also check in with coach operators and provide support however needed.

Management security review. I have asked the executive leadership team and safety and security management staff to review and evaluate the resources and protocols we have in place to assess if any changes or enhancements need to be made. Some of this work was already underway to evaluate and improve the physical environment around certain Swift stations in terms of lighting, etc., and in assessing this event, it may be this work could expand to points further along the corridor. We have a standing executive steering team that regularly reviews safety and security issues which will review and elevate recommended changes for consideration.

Thankfully, a fatal shooting on a Community Transit bus is extremely rare – no one that I have spoken to here remembers this happening before. While rare, if there is information we can learn and share, including additional ways to support each other, I want to ensure we are doing so. 

Events such as these can be difficult to process. Please remember that our agency partners with Wellspring to provide several resources to employees, including access to webinars, articles, and counseling services. You can access their services at The username is Community Transit. You also can reach out to any of the Employee Engagement representatives who stand ready to assist you. 

Thank you for all you do every day, caring for yourselves, each other and our customers. I am very proud to work with each of you.


Ric Ilgenfritz

Chief Executive Officer