LOWER BURRELL (KDKA) – Police are warning residents of a couple harassing dog owners at a Lower Burrell community park.
Lower Burrell Police Chief Tim Weitzel said in that his department was made aware of a middle-aged couple who was harassing dog owners at Officer Derek Kotecki Memorial Park.
“Dog walking is welcome at Lower Burrell City Parks,” said Weitzel. “This couple does not have the right to harass or accost anyone in our parks and an officer will respond if called to an incident where this is occurring.”
The archway entrance to the park pays tribute to Lower Burrell Police officer Derek Kotecki, he was a canine officer and an 18-year police veteran who was shot and killed in 2011.
This was the community’s way to honor his memory.
The Chief said people have every right to walk their dogs here. He said dog owners should not engage the couple, and they should call police if they are approached.
Dog owners KDKA News caught up with Thursday evening reacted to the warning with disgust.
Bert Majeran said, “I’m shocked, I’ve seen people harassing people on private property; everybody loves dogs.”
Dog owner Linda Febo said, “I’m very surprised, cause this is a very nice park. Usually, you don’t have anything like that going on here.”
Lower Burrell resident Linda Febo said she’s never seen this kind of action before.
“I haven’t heard anything about it, I’ve never been approached,” said Febo. “It’s just a peaceful community, everybody knows everybody. People come down here walking their dogs. We all know who each other is.”
Dogs have to be kept on leashes while in the park and owners must clean up after their pets, according to officials.
Weitzel encourages anyone that experiences the couple harassing them or observes the couple harassing anyone else to call 911.