(Photo: Thinkstock Photos)
NORTH LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) - As warmer temperatures approach around the corner, law enforcement and parks and recreation officials are making sure residents stay safe while enjoying parks in Arkansas.
With a soccer tournament and roughly 100 teams expected to kickoff Saturday at Burns Park, North Little Rock Park Superintendent Willie Elizandro knows the importance of proactive safety. North Little Rock installed cameras in certain areas of Burns Park to keep criminals from stealing copper from lights and to scan parking lots for potential threats.
"Parks are posting signs, saying this area is being monitored by cameras, and it's a deterrent to try to keep people from doing things they obviously shouldn't be doing," explained Elizandro.
Elizandro said North Little Rock park crime appears low, but most crimes happen in areas off the beaten path.
"They leave their cars in a little bit of a remote area, but increased patrols kind of stopped that from happening," said Elizandro.
Little Rock Police also remind park-goers to think ahead and go with a friend.
"A lot of people may come after work or something of that nature and have their valuables there, and they forget to lock them in the trunk in their haste to enjoy the park," added Sgt. Cassandra Davis with Little Rock Police.
Officers also recommend staying in well lit areas. North Little Rock recently added more security to their parks by hiring a ranger.
"He patrols the area; he's got authorization to give citation for minor citations out here at the park. It's just a high profile for him to deter that kind of activity also," said Elizandro.