Greenway security update

YAKIMA, Wash. -- For the last year the city of Yakima and the police department have discussed ways to make the Greenway safer for you.
One of their most recent projects is now a reality with more lights and security cameras.

"Good use of money," said Lesley Hahn.

"Wise choice to spend Money on that," said Steven Granstrand.
Christine Rice added, "I think it's an excellent investment."

Greenway users agreed that the $55,000 of tax payer money toward the new lighting and security cameras in three Greenway parking lots is a good thing.

"Cameras and lights really help people feel more safe," said Lesley.

Yakima police acknowledges there have been violent crimes around the Greenway, such as the double murder two summers ago, but the biggest crime - they say its car prowls.

"You didn't feel like leaving your cars here, there were shards of glass everywhere, you could see the cars were broken into," said Scott Wells.

"I don't leave my car in these parking lots," Jeff Nelson said.

That's why the city and police worked together to install cameras and lighting in the Myron Lake, 16th Ave. and Rotary Lake parking lots -- the three lots that have been hit the hardest with crime.

"There has been times where it's felt a little bit unsafe on some of the areas on the path," said Bill Hays.

The lights were installed in the fall and the cameras in early January. So far police are happy with the results.

"We haven't had a crime reported that's occurred in one of the three lots but we are anticipating if we do have that happen we'll have some good evidence to help us solve the crime," said Yakima Police Captain Greg Copeland.

Greenway users are noticing a difference too since the added security.

"I see more people parked in the parking lot," said Christine Rice.

That's what the city is hoping for so more people take advantage of the trail.

"I probably use it four days a week," said Sandi Hays.

Bill Hays said, "We'll walk it, we'll bike it, we've roller bladed on it so we've really enjoyed it over the years."

Yakima Police say the cameras and lights will really be put to the test when summer comes. That's when they see most crime at the Greenway.