Police Working to Stop Sex in Local Parks

By Lindsey Connell - bio | e-mail | Twitter

QUITMAN COUNTY, GA (WTVM) -  The sign for the River Bluff Park in Georgetown, Georgia says "Visitors Welcome" but some have worn out that welcome.

Over the past few weeks, the Quitman County Sheriff's Office has received a number of complaints from people who've stumbled across same-sex encounters on park grounds.

"They do have an outdoor restroom here for the public and we found two males inside one stall, engaging in sexual activity so those types of complaints have been on the increase. We've also found people coming down here, sitting in the cars, and parking similar to a Lover's Lane type of activity," said Quitman County Sheriff Steve Newton.

Police say most of the sexual activity happens at night but they've received several reports of it going on in broad daylight.

"The two males that were found in the restroom were happening during the day in the afternoon," Newton added.

The men range in age from 30 to 70 and the sheriff says most of them aren't Quitman County residents. Park-goers say they're shocked.

"I bring my kids to the lake all the time. I don't want them around junk like that. If they want to act that way, they should be in a hotel or in their own house not out here on public property," said Jed Barfield who fishes at the park on a regular basis.

Police are taking action, increasing patrols and installing hidden security cameras.

"We want families to be able to bring their children out here and feel very safe so we're really going to crack down," the sheriff added.

Sheriff Newton says anyone caught engaging in sexual activity in a Quitman County park will be arrested.

He says those arrested for that kind of offense can also expect their name, photo and charges to be released to the public.