PLEASANT HILL, Calif. (KRON) — Vandals in Pleasant Hill are causing thousands of dollars in damages at local parks.
“It bothers everybody a lot. I mean, it’s not just my staff, but the community,” said Tom Bradley, Pleasant Hill Recreation and Park District superintendent.
He said of the city’s 14 parks, Pleasant Oaks has been hit the hardest. The problem has been going on for two years but has grown in recent months.
Bradley said students from Pleasant Hill Middle School across the street are to blame. “There’s a handful of kids from the junior high across the street that come over here waiting for their parents to be picked up. They’re doing things like tagging things or vandalizing property in the bathrooms or on the play structures,” said Bradley.
The police department said the damages and clean-up fees have exceeded $15,000. Bradley said a surveillance camera was installed at Pleasant Oaks Park a month ago and has led to three teenage boys being referred to juvenile probation.
Park and recreation staff caught two boys in the act who are also facing probation.
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“It’s very distressing to know that the experiences that we want our public to have at our parks are things that we’re just really struggling to deliver now because of a few individuals,” said Sandy Bonato, Recreation and Park District Board chairwoman.
Bradley said more cameras could be added to parks in the future.