A string of attempted attacks has raised safety concerns in Cherokee Park, but police and local officials say the grounds are still safe for visitors.
Louisville Metro Police have also increased patrols around the park in response, spokesman Aaron Ellis said.
In three separate incidents, three people reported they'd been approached in the popular Highlands-area park on July 29 and July 30 by a man holding pepper spray and a taser with the intent of using it against them.
The incidents occurred between 8:30 and 9:30 p.m. both nights, LMPD spokesman Aaron Ellis said, and witnesses describing the man as wearing dark clothing and an N-95 mask.
The three people who reported being attacked fled, Ellis said, with no significant injuries reported. The man behind the attacks has not been found, he added, though patrols in the area continue as police work to bring "closure to the victims."
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Meanwhile, in a separate incident on Aug. 1, according to WLKY, another park attendee said she sought medical attention after a man attacked her with a branch at the park's entrance.
Ellis said this week he was unable to provide more specific information about the investigations. But "our Fifth Division officers and command continue regular patrols as well as incorporating our Mounted Patrol Unit in and around the park."
Metro Councilwoman Cassie Chambers Armstrong, whose district includes the park, said police patrols on the grounds are consistent. She's been contacted by constituents concerned about what had been reported, she said, and the whereabouts of the man accused of being responsible for the attacks. People want more information, she said, "I think in an attempt to make sure that they are taking steps to keep themselves safe when they're in the park."
Armstrong was back at the park this week, she said, bringing her 1-year-old son along with her on Tuesday. She kept a close eye on her surroundings, though, she said, adding she thinks others will do so in the aftermath of the recent incidents. If you're planning a trip to the park, she suggested going during daylight hours and walking along trails with more people and higher visibility.
She added that Fifth Division police officials have assured her people should "absolutely" feel safe while at the park, which is open from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m., according to Louisville's Parks and Recreation Department.
Any witnesses or individuals with information about the reported attacks are encouraged to call LMPD's crime tip hotline at 502-574-5673 or to reach out through the department's crime tip portal.
Reach Ana Rocío Álvarez Bríñez at firstname.lastname@example.org; follow her on Twitter at @SoyAnaAlvarez
This article originally appeared on Louisville Courier Journal: Cherokee Park attacks prompt more Louisville Metro Police patrols