Source: Sherman Publications

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Vandalism sparks security review

by Mary Keck

December 19, 2012

Early Sunday morning, two portable toilets in Depot Park were set on fire. This latest instance of destruction of city property has prompted city officials to consider taking stronger measures to curb vandalism.

"All the more reason to get those security cameras," said Mayor Joe Luginski during the City Council meeting on December 10.

The Depot Park gazebo, playground, and city hall building have also been targets for vandalism this year, but the council has only discussed installing surveillance equipment. "It just never made the budget for various reasons, but I think we need to rekindle that process," said Luginksi who suggested placing cameras on Main Street and in Depot Park.

Councilman Stephen Hargis agreed, emphasizing the need for urgency. "We've got to do something now," he said.

"We've had complaints about people down here fooling around on and off for a long time, and we need your help to put a stop to this," Hargis told Lt. Dirk Feneley who attended the meeting.

The new commander of Independence Township's substation encouraged the city to consider adding lighting and security cameras to the park. He suggested posting signs warning of video surveillance too. "It's a great deterrent," said Feneley.

City Manager Dennis Ritter was given the task of looking into the city's options for obtaining security cameras and improved lighting. "We need to get a couple of companies to come in and survey the property," said Luginski.

As for catching the perpetrators who ignited the port-o-potties, "we have no suspects at this time," Feneley stated.

The next City Council meeting will take place on January 14 at 7 p.m. at the City Hall on Depot Road.