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Playground Where Kids Found Condoms and Crack Pipe Now Locked at Night

 Sean's Place, a playground on 38th Street off of Broadway in Astoria.
Sean's Place, a playground on 38th Street off of Broadway in Astoria.
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DNAinfo/Jeanmarie Evelly

ASTORIA — The city has begun locking up a local playground overnight after complaints from parents who say they've discovered used condoms, human feces and drug paraphernalia in the play space, officials said Monday.

Sean's Place, located on 38th Street between Broadway and 31st Avenue, is supposed to close at 9 p.m. but has been a "consistent nighttime hangout" according to City Councilman Costa Constantinides.

"Parents [are] coming here in the morning and finding things you shouldn't find in a children's playground," the lawmaker said. "Not every park gets locked, but we knew that this park had to be."

Since Wednesday, members of the city's Parks Enforcement Patrol started locking Sean's Place at night, a Parks Department spokeswoman said.

The change comes after an outpouring of complaints from parents over the cleanliness of the playground.

"We actually stopped coming for a while, it was just so gross so frequently," said Alison Lee, who was in the park Monday with her toddler and said she's found broken liquor bottles, discarded food containers and even human feces in the playground.

Brian McCoy, a father of two and a member of the Friends of Sean's Place group, said one child picked up a crack pipe off the ground about a month a half ago."Kids, they go and they find everything," he said. "Those things look like toys to them."

Constantinides said his office hasn't heard any complaints about nighttime activity since the new policy went into effect last week. Officers from the 114th Precinct will also begin patrolling the park at night to make sure no one tries to hop the fence, he said.

According to the Parks Department, the city doesn't have the resources to lock every park at night — the agency has to decide which spaces to secure based on things like vandalism and community complaints.

"We're going to continue to monitor it, and make sure that this park stays safe at night," Constantinides said.