News And Politics

Security camera installation at Harvard Park complete

Jan. 23, 2013, 4:04 p.m.

A memorial for Patrick Caruthers at Jackie Tatum/Harvard Recreation Center, where the 19-year-old was shot on Sept. 25. (José Martinez/OnCentral)

Nearly four months after City Council approved the project, the installation of the security cameras at Jackie Tatum/Harvard Recreation Center is finally complete.

The project garnered a lot of attention soon after Sept. 25, when 19-year-old Patrick Caruthers was shot and killed in the park. Caruthers, who had special needs, had been a volunteer at the park for years and was a community fixture. He was sitting on a bench around 3 p.m. when someone approached him from behind and gunned him down. He died at the scene.

South L.A. police believe that Caruthers' killer was a black male gang member who fled the murder scene in a dark compact car – but that's about all they know. No arrests have been made.

Three days later after the shooting, City Councilman Bernard Parks urged the council to approve a report by the City Administrative Office's that would set the installation of security cameras into motion. He'd been pushing for the cameras since November 2011.

Parks, along with representatives from the LAPD and the city's Department of Parks and Recreation, will announce that the six cameras are officially operational at a Thursday morning press conference at Jackie Tatum/Harvard Recreation Center. The cameras will be able to record a 360-degree view of the park.

A statement from Parks' office said officials are hopeful the cameras will deter any future illegal activity from taking place there.

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