San Pablo Park in Berkeley.

Carrie Hodousek/ KCBS Radio

Berkeley Installs First Surveillance Cameras In Park

Carrie Hodousek
March 19, 2019 - 12:08 pm

BERKELEY — For the first time, there are surveillance cameras in a Berkeley park as city officials try to increase security and calm fears of violence. 

San Pablo Park now has 17 security cameras that were installed last month following complaints about the shootings in recent years. In one incident during daylight hours last August, two bystanders were struck when a shooter fired at a rival gang member, according to police. 

“It frightened the people in the neighborhood and those who use the park,” Berkeley Mayor Jesse Arreguín said. “The park really is a hub for the West Berkeley community, and it’s unacceptable that any person should feel unsafe in any of our parks.”

Berkeleyside reports an Oakland felon with suspected gang ties has been charged in two shootings at the park.

The Berkeley City Council approved the installation of the cameras in October. 

“Having cameras and signage to let people know they’re under surveillance we hope will serve as a deterrent against any shootings or any crime from happening,” Arreguín said. “If there is something that does occur, it will help the police department in their investigation.”

Berkeley police and city staff will be able to review the footage as needed, but no one will be assigned to watch it live on a regular basis.