Boy Poked By Syringe Needle Near Playground

By Melissa Garcia

FORT COLLINS, Colo. (CBS4)– An entire community is outraged after a little boy was poked by a hypodermic needle near a playground in Fort Collins.

The 4-year-old boy was picking up pinecones near a tree just feet away from playground equipment at Lee Martinez Park when he saw a syringe and pricked his hand while picking it up, according to a Facebook post by the boy’s mother.kid poked by needle 5vomap frame 927 Boy Poked By Syringe Needle Near Playground

More than 1,000 people had commented on the post.

Lee Martinez Park is a busy recreational space where many parents, like Michael Rivoire, take their kids.

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(credit: Facebook)

“Hopefully this is a fluke. I’ve grown up here my whole life and never heard of anything like this before,” said Rivoire.

Doctors took a sample of the boy’s blood to test for Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C and HIV. They told his mother that it was too soon to know if he had been infected with a disease but that the chances were low.

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(credit: Facebook)

Rebecca Cranston, Regional Director for the Northern Colorado AIDS Project (NCAP) said the non-profit had proposed installing safe syringe disposal kiosks throughout the city to prevent similar incidents.

“It has not been passed. There is a lot of resistance. But what people really need are options for safer disposal,” Cranston told CBS4’s Melissa Garcia.

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Lee Martinez Park in Fort Collins (credit: CBS)

NCAP recently started a community clean-up program and is asking for volunteers to help pick up needles that have been discarded where they don’t belong.

“There’s nothing like that going on currently that’s sponsored by the city or the county… So we will go out with our trash bags and our sharp safe containers and we’ll actually be cleaning up the syringes or other trash that might be out in public parks,” Cranston said.

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CBS4’s Melissa Garcia interviews Rebecca Cranston, Regional Director for the Northern Colorado AIDS Project (NCAP) (credit: CBS)

Those who are interested in participating in the monthly cleanups can contact Sam Bourdon at 970-632-2046 or check out NCAP’s Facebook page. The next cleanup day is Monday, Oct. 9.

Needle users can safely dispose of used needles at NCAP’s facility located at 400 Remington St. Suite 100 or by calling 970-484-4469.

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(credit: NCAP)

NCAP facility safe disposal hours:

Monday through Friday from 9 a.m.- 5 p.m.
Wednesdays from 9 a.m.- 7 p.m.

The Larimer County Household Hazardous Waste Facility accepts hazardous waste Monday through Saturday (excluding Wednesday) as long as sharps are in approved containers, which are available at NCAP. Some businesses also have sharps containers in their bathrooms. NCAP is working on outreach around supporting more businesses in that endeavor.

Colorado Access Point is another organization with safe disposal locations in Denver and Grand Junction.

Melissa Garcia has been reporting for CBS4 News since March 2014. Find her bio here, follow her on Twitter @MelissaGarciaTV, or send your story idea to mkgarcia@cbs.com.

Comments

One Comment

  1. Vicky Green says:

    “Hopefully this is a fluke.” This is not a fluke. Has the lifetime resident Michael Rivoire failed to notice the burgeoning population of transients/street dwellers/urban campers in Ft. Collins over the last ten years? Most of them are drug or alcohol abusers, addicts, or suffering from some form of mental illness. A young local woman was murdered by a transient this summer while walking home from her night-shift job, and her body was dumped in the lake in City Park. City government has failed to adequately address the transient problems in Ft. Collins. Many residents are frustrated by that, others are in total denial. We recently sold our house in the Old Town area and moved to the Western Slope. What’s actually happening in Ft. Collins is very unfortunate, and far from the “family friendly” image the city tries to portray. And it’s getting worse by the day. Very disappointing.

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