Saint John Police Force say they’ve received recent reports of an indecent act and voyeurism at Rockwood Park.
Jim Hennessy, the force’s communications manager, could not confirm where within the park the incidents occurred, but did say they took place within the last two weeks.
He said it’s important for all park users to know their surroundings and he recommends people carry a cellphone with them in case of an emergency.
“Stay in groups if you can,” he said. “And, again, we just remind people as well that if you are going off the trail system, kind of keep an eye on your bearings.
“Know where you went in. Have a plan for coming out.”
The report caught the attention of Jason Lambert and Alyssa Melvin, who brought their children aged two and four to the Rockwood Park Kiwanis Playpark on Monday.
“One of us are always with one kid and one of us are always with the other so that they’re not by themselves,” Melvin said. “We always just make sure that we’re all close together.”
Melvin said they will be extra cautious from now on.
“It does make you feel a little bit unsafe,” she said of the reports. “It is your neighbourhood and we’ve never really had to worry about those things before, but now it’s happening close to home.”
Beth Garnett said she always carries her keys and a personal safety alarm system when visiting the park.
Garnett and her daughter, Tori, brought their new dog, Deacon, to the park.
Beth Garnett said they would normally walk along some trails, but opted for a picnic instead after hearing of the incidents.
“It makes you nervous and scared, even though you have all these things to help you feel safer but at the same time it’s still scary knowing that these things are happening,” Tori Garnett said.
Another park user, Suzanne Hill, said she has never felt unsafe, but admitted she had gotten lost once when straying from the trails. She said she carries her cellphone with her and uses common sense.
“I never come at night or early-early or late-late,” Hill said. “But if I come during the day, I feel fine. And I don’t carry a purse.”
Police say no one was injured in the incidents and no arrests have been made.