LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) - A basketball court remains in Columbian Park, but essential pieces are missing. Two blue trash cans stand where the hoops once were.
Two weeks ago the Lafayette Police Department and the Parks and Recreation Department decided to remove the hoops after stepping up patrols in the park.
"Other than Armstrong [Park] I'd rather come here because the hoops are nice and sturdy," Lafayette resident Ryan Patrick Hankins said.
"[We're] trying to watch what is going on, trying to control the foul language, and talk to the individuals, and move them on when the language got to the point where it is not appropriate," Lafayette Parks Superintendent Ted Bumbleburg said.
Bumbleburg said neighbors have been complaining about the language of the players.
Neighbors have also voiced concerns about fights at the park. They told News 18 they think they are gang-related.
Several weeks ago in a public meeting Lafayette police said they didn't have evidence of gangs . However, police now say they may have that evidence.
They said they discovered graffiti that spelled out 4CH. The markings could stand for the Four Corner Hustlers Gang.
Bumbleburg said taking away the hoops is to address neighbors' concerns and hopefully help the overall behavior of some park patrons.
"This is the first time we ever had to remove basketball goals because of the issues," Bumbleburg said. "We did get a letter or an email from one of the neighbors who says she has seen a difference since they have been removed."
But one player wonders how everyone will deal with it.
"Basketball is something a lot of kids can get in to," Hankins said. "If they don't have that what else are they going to do?"
Bumbleburg said he does not know when or if the hoops will go back.
People across Indiana are bundling up against colder temperatures than parts of the state saw in either of the past two winters.
A northwestern Indiana planning board is expected to vote on whether to move forward with building the proposed Illiana Expressway that would connect Interstate 65 near Lowell with Interstate 55 south of Chicago.
An attorney for a southern Indiana man charged with murder in the death of his 20-year-old nephew says the shooting was an accident.