SEATTLE - Seattle police were not able to collect surveillance video from the Van Asselt Community Center following a recent parking lot shootout there because the rec center’s security cameras don’t work.
Investigators said more than 50 gunshots were fired Saturday evening around 6:30 p.m., cracking the glass at the community center’s entrance, shattering car windows and hitting at least three nearby homes with people inside.
KIRO 7 interviewed one person Saturday who said he was playing video games in his bedroom when a bullet went through a nearby window.
Police said there were no reported injuries. No arrests have been made.
Despite signs around the South Seattle property warning people they’re on camera, Seattle Parks and Recreation told KIRO 7 the community center’s security cameras don’t work because the building’s surveillance system is outdated.
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A Seattle Parks and Recreation spokesperson couldn’t immediately say how long the cameras have been offline and told KIRO 7 there are no current plans to get the cameras working again.
"That is surprising,” said Blandy Inzunza, a mother who stopped by the community center’s playground with her children Monday to meet friends. "You would think that there's cameras because kids running around here."
Seattle Parks and Recreation said it would discuss ways to address safety issues as police investigate the shootout that happened across the street from department’s south precinct.
Sixteen of Seattle’s community centers don’t have any security cameras, according to a parks and recreation spokesperson, who wouldn’t immediately disclose those locations or say how many centers have surveillance systems that don’t work.
There are ongoing improvement projects at Seattle community centers that parks and recreation said often include security upgrades.
"This community has a ton of kids, a lot of families,” said Jennifer Steinke, who lives nearby. “We're relying on this wading pool for summer and so it would be really hard if this community continues to have issues and people don't feel safe."
Two parks employees were inside the Van Asselt Community Center when it was hit by gunfire Saturday. The center was closed at the time but set to host an event that evening that was canceled because of the shooting.
Seattle police ask anyone with information regarding Saturday’s parking lot shootout to call 911 or the violent crimes tip line at 206 233-5000.
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