RIDLEY TOWNSHIP, Pa - Police in Delaware County are cracking down on motorized vehicles on township athletic fields.
"It's sad. It's sad," said Nina Peterson. She lives within walking distance of Blackrock Park in the Swarthmorewood section of Ridley Township. She has endless memories of the place.
"I was a cheerleader when I was a kid, the kids playing football, just going down there to play and hang out in the neighborhood. We played softball together," said Peterson.
If you go there today there is evidence of fun. Just the wrong kind.
"It's not good to vandalize. I mean why? Don't you have anything better to do?" said Peterson.
Police say someone left deep tracks filled with muddy water on the athletic fields.
It appears to be from some sort of motorized vehicle. Ridley Township police said on its Crime Watch page there have been numerous incidents like this at neighborhood parks forcing the township to pay thousands of dollars to fix. Now, police are enforcing a zero-tolerance policy that could leave anyone caught doing this with a fine of up to $1,000.
“It only bothers me because I know like our taxes are high to begin with and where are they going to get the money to repair the field?" said Adam Kuhn. He lives in a house that backs up against the woods that line the park. He says he's heard vehicles back there in the past.
"Just sounded like four-wheelers revving their engines and riding around," he recalled.
Police say the crackdown applies to anyone operating a vehicle like an ATV, dirt bike or other motorized recreational vehicle on township property without permission with the exception of a private driveway or paved road.
"I'm never a fan of zero tolerance. I’ll be honest and yet I don’t think that the problem would be resolved without consequences," said a woman who did not want to be identified.
In addition to the fine, whoever is doing this risks suspension of driving privileges, the vehicle impounded, and possibly 30 days in jail.
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