Lakewood mayor closes basketball courts due to "credible threat" - Cleveland 19 News Cleveland, OH

Lakewood mayor closes basketball courts due to "credible threat"


At Kauffman Park on Detroit Rd. in Lakewood, anyone hoping to play a game of basketball is out of luck.

The courts are still closed.

Mayor Michael Summers closed them down temporarily since May 21 after getting what he calls a "credible public safety threat".

Summers wouldn't elaborate on the nature of the threat, or who it came from, but says it stems from a dispute with "some neighbors" that's nearly three years old.

19 Action News reporter Dawn Kendrick spoke with David Heller who's home has abutted the park for more than 30 years.

Heller said he's complained repeatedly to city council that the repeated bouncing of balls is distracting when he's trying to work.

"This has nothing to do with the behavior of kids at the park, just about noise issues in general," Mayor Summers told Kendrick.

On Tuesday Rayn Salo was playing baseball with his kids instead of basketball after they found those courts closed.

"It seems like we're negotiating with domestic terrorists," said Salo. "I mean you protect the kids from these people you don't protect them from the kids."

"This action allows us to cool off sort through options," said Mayor Summers.

The rest of the park is still open to the public.

"If I had reason to believe a kid was at risk here I would take appropriate action," said Mayor Summers.

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