Council votes to put cameras in Hamilton parks

A Hamilton park. (FOX19)
A Hamilton park. (FOX19)

HAMILTON, OH (FOX19) - The city of Hamilton is looking at ways to fight back against vandalism problems plaguing some its parks.
On Wednesday night council members there voted 7-0 to pass a measure to install security cameras at three parks and three spraygrounds.
Veterans Park is one of the places that will get some cameras.  It's also where one local woman spends a lot of her time.
"We come almost every single day," said Jennifer Sauter who uses the park, as well as the dog park there.
Vandals have hit that park, RiversEdge and a few other places.  They've bent stage lights, destroyed bathroom soap dispensers, broken sprinklers and overturned portable bathrooms.
On top of that, Sauter says she's found trash littering the area lately.
"There's people here that come every day and try to enjoy it, and then there's people that come and don't pick up after themselves and ruins it for everybody else," Sauter said.
That's what the city hopes to stop by making the $25,000 decision at their meeting.  The funds will put DVR-based security cameras in Veterans Park, RiversEdge, Colligan Lodge and the city's spraygrounds.
"I'm a little weirded out by the "big brother" aspect of it," said Gordon Brown of Hamilton.
Brown is a regular at the park, and has his concerns.  But, he also sees the need.
"It could prevent, or at least catch, but hopefully prevent, something from happening," Brown said.
For those using the parks, they want to see their favorite place safe, and clean.
"I honestly think that the cameras would be a good idea.  It would probably help limit the vandalism and probably make people want to clean up after themselves," Sauter told FOX19.
Hamilton Police Chief Scott Scrimizzi tells FOX19 some of the people that police believe to be responsible for some of the vandalism have been charged.  He says they're all juveniles.
Scrimizzi says some of the cameras could go up in as little as 10 days.

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