In what may be a copycat of similar incidents reported around the country, Oak Lawn Police said that dry wall screws were found bolted on three slides in Memorial Park at 10200 S. Major Avenue.
Police were called to Memorial Park, also known as “Rocket Slide Park,” around 11:30 a.m. June 5, when someone reported finding screws fastened on the slides. The bolts and screws were immediately removed by park district employees.
Joel Craig, facilities director for the Oak Lawn Park District, said it appeared that the dry wall screws had been attached to the slides in such a manner as to "deliberately harm someone."
“We got a call saying there were screws in the exit sections on the slides,” Craig said. “We called police because I wanted them to be aware.”
In March, a 2-year-old boy cut himself on razor blades that were glued to playground equipment in East Moline, IL. Razor blades were also found duct taped to playground equipment in a Philadelphia suburb in April.
Craig said park district employees are now inspecting playground equipment in Oak Lawn parks on a daily basis. The police department has also advised officers to keep a special watch on parks.
“We’re being vigilant and checking the equipment every morning before kids come,” he said. “We hope it’s an isolated incident.”