TAMPA, Fla. -- After neighbors found a used syringe in a city park, the head of the neighborhood watch took it upon herself to warn parents.
Susan Elbare put up signs that read, “HEP-C & HIV RISK.” It explained that a syringe had been found at Patterson Street Park in Seminole Heights, just feet from the playground.
“You need to work within the channels and get things done, but sometimes something that's to me as serious as that, you just need to do something quick,” Elbare said.
Karen Collins, who lives two houses away from the park, said kids regularly play and read in the park.
“Very scary to know kids are down there with this stuff, and people are doing this,” Collins said.
Eventually, the city did find out about the syringe, and Elbare agreed to take the signs down.
“Clearly, it wasn't our sign,” said Paul Dial, director of Parks and Recreation for Tampa.
Dial added that his crews inspected the park and didn’t see any syringes, and police will be patrolling the area more often.
However, people who live in the neighborhood said what they really want is lights in the park.
“We're going to look at that and give that some more consideration after hearing this new concern,” Dial explained.
Neighbors who've asked for lights for years hope the sign finally got the city's attention.
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