New Yelm Park Surveillance Camera Feature Nets After-Hours Drug Arrest

By Eric Schwartz / eschwartz@yelmonline.com
Posted 5/28/19

Yelm police have a new tool when it comes to confronting after-hours crime in city parks.

Surveillance cameras already in use at Yelm City Park have a new feature. They are now programmed to …

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New Yelm Park Surveillance Camera Feature Nets After-Hours Drug Arrest

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Yelm police have a new tool when it comes to confronting after-hours crime in city parks.

Surveillance cameras already in use at Yelm City Park have a new feature. They are now programmed to notify police officers on duty any time someone is in the park when it’s closed. The technology will be rolled out to all other city parks in the weeks and months ahead, said Police Chief Todd Stancil.

“Prior to this, the chances of finding (someone) in the park at night is pretty slim,” he said.

The new camera function was put to use for the first time at about 2 a.m. Friday, May 24, when an officer was notified that someone was in Yelm City Park.



He contacted the man, Jake Johnson, 31, of Yelm, and advised him the park was closed and that he would need to leave. As the man was gathering his belongings, the officer discovered through a records check that Johnson had a felony arrest warrant for drugs out of Thurston County.

During his arrest, Johnson admitted to having meth and heroin, but the officer couldn’t find any. Johnson then said he must have lost it.

Instead, as Johnson was taken to the Thurston County Jail, Johnson told the officer “the dope is in my underwear.” After the officer retrieved it from a pouch in Johnson’s underwear, Johnson asked the officer to throw it away. The officer declined.

Johnson was booked into the Thurston County Jail for the warrant in addition to possession of meth and heroin.

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