Neighbors want more safety at Peter Pan Park - News, Weather and Sports for Lincoln, NE; KLKNTV.com

Neighbors want more safety at Peter Pan Park

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Posted by: Brittany Paris
bparis@klkntv.com

Lincoln Parks and Recreation says their main goal is to make Peter Pan Park safer.

"It's pitch black. It's dark as midnight out here and we need to lighten this place up," Lafaya Helmstadter, a neighbor to Peter Pan Park, said.

More lights. It's what neighbors who live near the park and Jarvis Long's family, are asking from Lincoln Parks and Rec.

"I mean, if there were more lights in this park, these neighbors could have saw what was going on back there," Jessica Scdoris, Jarvis Long's sister, said.

"If there were lights here, it may never have happened," another sister, Starla Waters-Rankins, said.

After Long's body was found in the park last month, neighbors say they've been on edge.

Lincoln Parks and Rec held a Walk and Talk at the park Wednesday night, inviting neighborhood residents, to see what they want done to make the area safer.

"Pretty much it's the lighting in the park," Dustin Olfman, who lives near the park, said. "Even before this, it's been a concern of ours."

The group walked with Parks and Rec around Peter Pan Park to look for areas where there is low light.

Most of the lights in the park are near the playground, on the opposite end of where Long was found.

"Our parks in Lincoln are safe places. They're places of refuge. So we want people to come out and feel safe there. So anything that we can do to promote that, we're very interested in," Jerry Shorney, Assistant Director for Lincoln Parks and Rec., said.

They say they're also considering video cameras. They would be attached to the new City Impact Center that will be built adjacent to the park this summer.

Long's family says hopefully these changes will prevent future crimes.

"We don't want this to ever happen to any else's family. We don't want anyone else's family to go through what we're going through right now," Waters-Rankins said.

Lincoln Parks and Rec says each light runs 3,000 to 5,000 dollars.

They'll take the information from the walk through, talk to LES and figure out a plan. They hope changes can be made within the next few months.

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