Unarmed safety guards will patrol Sara Sims Park on weekends and a camera-monitoring specialist shall be tasked with watching surveillance video from inside the park, positioned within the Coronary heart of Boynton.
The plan, offered to the town fee on Tuesday by Police Chief Michael Gregory, is in response to what occurred on Christmas evening, when a whole bunch of individuals gathered on the park and 4 individuals had been shot close by.
One particular person was shot within the face and pronounced useless on the scene. Three others, together with a juvenile, had been additionally struck by gunfire and brought to Delray Medical Heart.
The result, authorities mentioned, may have been far worse as a result of the shooter fired right into a crowd of roughly 400 to 500 individuals earlier than fleeing with others in a rental automobile.
Juan Harris, 22, was arrested two weeks after the capturing and faces one depend of first-degree homicide with a firearm and 4 counts of tried first-degree homicide with a firearm. He’s being held within the Palm Seaside County Jail with out bail and has entered not responsible pleas.
Nobody else has been arrested within the case.
“What occurred this previous Christmas isn’t new,” Vice Mayor Ty Penserga informed Gregory in February. “This isn’t the primary time it’s occurred at Sara Sims.”
Gregory appeared earlier than the board once more this week and detailed a plan that may price the town $30,000 by way of September and companions with West Palm Seaside-based Skilled Safety Consultants, which will provide the safety guards that patrol the park and the digital camera displays who will hold an eye fixed out from police headquarters.
The guards, referred to by Gregory as “ambassadors”, are anticipated to work together with the public and function an early-warning system. They aren’t licensed to implement legal guidelines or make arrests and will not carry something extra deadly than a duplicate of park guidelines.
“Having their presence there’ll hopefully discourage the parents who would need to collect, even in small crowds, for illicit functions… bringing medicine, open containers and the like,” Gregory mentioned.
The digital camera displays, working out of the police division’s “real-time’ crime heart, will present one other set of eyes for police and might alert patrol officers when crowd measurement begins to develop into a difficulty.
Each the digital camera displays and guards shall be employed solely on Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays and holidays when the park, which closes at 10 p.m., attracts essentially the most guests.
Officers have elevated patrols within the space, however Gregory mentioned using guards and cameras is a greater possibility than utilizing uniformed personnel as a result of it avoids the impression “the park is a [police] sub-station.”
The brand new safety measures will increase these already in place at the park, together with emergency name bins, surveillance cameras and license-plate readers.
Sara Sims will be the one park in Boynton Seaside that may use the personal safety guards, who will get round on motorized tools, Gregory mentioned.
Metropolis Supervisor Lori LaVerriere informed commissioners that enhanced safety does not imply there will not be points. Regardless of the scale of the group on Christmas evening, individuals had been performing peacefully and behaving themselves till the capturing started, she mentioned.
“Can we ever forestall that?” LaVerriere mentioned. “I do not know if that is doable.”