Vandalism becoming an issue at Lions Park

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Recent vandalism at Lions Park in Blair has residents and law enforcement concerned.

Over the last year, the Blair Police Department (BPD) has received reports of about a half a dozen issues, mainly focusing on the damage to the restrooms, which were completed in 2019.

In April, BPD officers received two reports of criminal mischief. Photographs from those reports showed broken soap dispensers, items stuff into the toilets, trash, broken door sensors and graffiti etched into the doors.

On at least one occasion, the restrooms had to be closed due to the vandalism.

No suspects have been identified, however, people have reported juveniles as those causing the damage.

“It sounds like there are always kids in the area when the damage is occurring,” Capt. Travis Lyon said. “There's just so many people that it's just so hard to try to get a pattern of who's doing it or what's going on with it.”

One resident, who declined to be identified, said she was concerned for those who use the park on a regular basis.

“This is not how it should be. This is a public park. There are children here. There are families here,” she said. “I just hate to see it destroyed.”

Due to staffing and manpower issues, BPD doesn't have the officers to dedicate to sitting at the park to deter vandalism.

Lyon said would like to see security cameras placed near the restroom to identify any potential suspects when vandalism occurs.

“It wouldn't be pointing into the doors or restrooms, it would be facing toward the park ... That way you could see who is coming in and who is coming out,” he said.

Lyon encouraged those who see the vandalism to report the incident immediately.

“If you see something, call right away,” he said.

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