We have learned that during the volunteer cleanup day near the Reserve Street Bridge on Thursday that two Montana Department of Transportation workers were allegedly assaulted by an individual in the former camp area.

Bob Vosen, Missoula District Administrator with the Montana Department of Transportation described how the day began.

“They started this morning with some equipment to get the heavy stuff out and the volunteers were there to do some of the hand work for the boots on the ground portion of it so that work is getting started today,” said Vosen. “Before we started, to my understanding because I wasn't on-site myself, there were one or two individuals in the area that were removed by law enforcement and asked to leave the area so that we could do the cleanup work.”

Vosen said trespassers in the area are a somewhat chronic problem.

“It's been continuous work to keep the area secured and we've got a security firm called Rogers Security has been doing daily or nightly patrols of the area and they have encountered individuals down there and they call law enforcement to try to assist in the removal of those individuals that are trespassing in the area, but it is kind of at an ongoing challenge,” he said.

Vosen provided details of the alleged assault on two of his MDT employees that occurred on Thursday.

“I have been informed that an individual in the area did assault a couple of the MDT employees in the area,” he said. “I don't have great many details about what happened, but no major injuries or no serious injuries occurred to any MDT employees. In addition, the individual that did assault the MDT employees was arrested, as my understanding.”

Vosen is asking for the public’s help in notifying authorities if they see any trespassers in the old Reserve Street camp area so that they can be safely removed.

“One thought I have is that if people are driving by and they see somebody that's trespassing in there that is public land and it's marked as no trespassing,” he said. “If people could, maybe if they see somebody down there they can give the sheriff's office or police department a call and let them know. I don't have the manpower to post somebody up there all the time, so any help we can get from the public in that regard would be a good thing too. I think.”

We have reached out to the Missoula County Sheriff’s Office for confirmation about the arrest of the individual who allegedly assaulted the MDT employees.

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