School has ‘limited working cameras,’ says official

HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) – On Monday, students hit the deck inside a playground at Sands Elementary School as three bullets put holes in the side of the school only feet from where they were playing.

“I heard a shot, so we thought it was a fire cracker or something,” said student Valerie Moreno. “Then we heard another one and we got a little scared and got on the floor. Then when the other one happened we ran into the girls locker room.”

They ran right past some security cameras to safety. While covering the story, News 8 noticed one of the cameras was pointing at the sky instead of being directed at the playground.

“I never knew that was broke,” said a mother who declined to go on camera. “So they are just letting it sit there. They need to fix that.”

Students who were checking out the bullet holes up close were not surprised the camera doesn’t work. They say many security cameras inside the school don’t work either.

“The cameras are not even functioning, they are shut down,” said student Harry Moreno, adding that the lack of surveillance doesn’t make him feel any safer.

News 8 spoke with David Medina, the spokesperson for Hartford public schools, He says the camera near the playground does not work. It is obsolete and outdated.

Medina says there are other cameras inside the building that are obsolete and he says they have “limited working cameras” at the school. But he says it is in the budget for about 10 to 15 cameras to be installed on July 1.

“They say they get a lot of money for a lot of things but I haven’t seen it yet,” said the mother. “It is time for us to go, We have been here 5 years and it’s just not adequate for my son.”

While police are investigating the shooting looking to make an arrest, News 8 will continue to investigate why the school can’t get the cameras any earlier than the end of the school year.

Meanwhile, students at Sands Elementary know the importance of the security cameras.

“There are a lot of students,” said Harry Moreno. “There are kindergarteners and teachers and there are a lot of things going on in the school.”

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