Mon. May 27th, 2024

Men lurking at Santiago Park

In a city with a terrible lack of park space, Santiago Park is a veritable oasis.  The park is located in north Santa Ana, within easy walking distance of the MainPlace Mall.  The new CityPlace shopping center is located right across the street.

I like to walk my dog there, along the trail on the north side of the park.  I was doing that just yesterday, in the morning, when we came across two men who were loitering on either side of the trail.  As I passed them I turned around and took a picture of them with my Blackberry phone.  Then I called the Santa Ana Police Department.

You can see the picture of the two men above.  I could not discern what they were up to.  They were just lurking there.  Below, in the riverbed, another guy was loitering on a bike.  And it got worse.

Another man lurking at Santiago Park

I took my dog over the foot bridge on the east side of the park and we doubled back.  As we did so we spotted another guy, this time standing in the brush.  Waiting.  For Lord knows what.  I took his picture too.

My dog and I also walked along a dirt path along the riverbed, on the south side, and spotted a pair of vinyl gloves and a pair of pants hanging in the shrubs.  We saw another pair of the gloves on the north trail.  These are the sort of gloves used by nurses.  See the pictures below.

Man lurking at Santiago Park

And yet another guy was lurking by the cabin on the west side, near the playground.

Why are all these men loitering in Santiago Park?

Santa Ana Park Ranger

The police responded within twenty minutes.  A park ranger showed up and I spoke to him.  He said that he routinely chases men out of the park along the trails and also under the overpass and the aforementioned bridge, and in the bathrooms alongside the tennis court.  The officer told me that men come to the park to hook up – and to have sex.

I went back to the park the same day, at dusk.  The park closes at dark, so I didn’t go in, but I walked around the park.  Found many instances of graffiti and trash.

Ironically, graffiti in Santa Ana’s Artist Village is always covered up by the City of Santa Ana, right away.  But guess what?  The founder of the Artists Village, Don Cribb, lives in the Park Santiago Neighborhood – and he is on a city committee that is examining ways to improve Santiago Park!

Strange car at Santiago Park

I witnessed another strange incident in my evening visit to the park.  A car pulled into the park entrance on Main St., as the barricade was left open.  A young lady walked up the sidewalk to the car, and got in.  The car zoomed off and got on the 5 Freeway, due north on the carpool lane.  Is the park being used by johns who are meeting prostitutes there?  Hard to say, but they could have met at a number of shopping centers.  Instead they met at a dark park.

Sure enough, a cop came by later, but too late to catch them.

I will say this – our police department is very responsive and they are trying to police the park.  It just isn’t working out the rest of the time, when the cops aren’t there.

A new movie just came out called the “Lovely Bones.”  In it a family grieves for their fourteen year old daughter, who was killed by a perverted neighbor.  How soon before we find some lovely bones at Santiago Park?  Already one transient killed another, about a year and a half ago.  The killer was never found.

Click here to contact the Santa Ana City Council.  Click here to contact Councilman Carlos Bustamante, who represents the Santiago Park area.

Here are a few more of the pictures I took yesterday:

Maintenance truck at Santiago Park

Landscapers were picking up trash at Santiago Park, but a lot more trash lay on the trails and in the brush

Vinyl gloves at Santiago Park

Why are there discarded vinyl gloves at the park?

Graffiti at Santiago Park

Graffiti near the Main St. entrance to the park

Pants in a bush at Park Santiago

Evidence of homeless occupants at the park

Graffiti on Main St. in Santa Ana

More graffiti near the park

Shopping cart and graffiti at Santiago Park

Yep, shopping carts and more graffiti

This is where the police say men are often found hooking up

This is where police say that men are often found hooking up at Santiago Park.  The trail leads under Main St. to the Discovery Science Center

Graffiti in north Santa Ana

By Editor

The New Santa Ana blog has been covering news, events and politics in Santa Ana since 2009.

89 thoughts on “Why do so many solitary men lurk at Santa Ana’s Santiago Park?”
  1. I would suggest Mr. Art you do not go to the park anymore unless you are wanting a pull for money… the gloves are a protectant – if you get my drift?

    Santa Ana is such a horrible place and will only get worse. The supervisors should have their heads on a stick for allowing the decay of this city..

    It is really sad, i saw some beautiful pictures of this city before it became a third world whole!

    very sad!

    1. I agree with that but you guys wanna know why there is so many guys ???? They used the park por sex men4men this is horrible

  2. Police will tell you this has been a So. Cal. homosexual cruising spot for many, many, years which they say is promoted on the internet. About 10 year ago a Police officer, I think his name was Owen, was in charge of a task force to try to stop it. The Park Santiago association also had volunteer bike patrols to call police. They nearly wiped it out but then a homosexual rights group threatened the city with law suits and the police backed off. It’s a sick situation and will take pressure from the city council to do anything. They are there day and night and sadly many of them are in suits meeting young Mexican boys. Thank you Art for having the guts to take the photos and write about it.

  3. Another long-time trouble spot for prostitution is the corner of Harbor & MacArthur. I work near there and used to take walks around the block occasionally…until I spotted enough used condoms on the ground to make me sick to my stomach, and actually got asked by a male if I wanted a boyfriend. I don’t walk around the block anymore.

  4. I use to take my children to play on the big slides. I notice there always men a round wathing and my children, it made me very uncomtable. t couldn`t let my children run around there it was to scary. so we stop going. my children are always asking to go there ,but tell them to many weired going on there. so now we drive to go to another park, but my kids don`t like the the park we go to. they enjoy the big slides that the other park has. thanks to these perverts our children cann`t enjoy the park. shame on these men.

  5. WTG U Art!! If more residents and others that frequent this park paid as much attention as you have to the freak show that is unfolding there daily this type of thing could and would stop! Thank You for having enough guts to do what you have and make others aware!

  6. Jesus, you people have TOO MUCH time on your hands. I bet you keep a pair of binoculars to spy on your neighbors too.
    Damn – Get a life for God’s sake.

    1. Robert,

      Really? Did you know that this post led to a decoy sweep of the park and nine perverts got arrested in one day? Do you think that is OK for these perverts to be having sex in a public park where there are kids playing? Maybe you are one of them…

    2. These people are pathetic and it’s obvious they have too much time on their hands. Get a life.

    3. When I see straight couples getting busted for having sex in the cars then I’ll worry about gay men looking to meet each other.

  7. I live in the neighborhood with my family and I want to enjoy the park. We know what is happening and it pisses us off, get a room already. Tear down the restrooms, put in more lights and increase fines/jail time.

  8. My child and dog walk through there every day. The guys that empty the trash and clean the rest rooms have those vinyl gloves. Mystery solved. I saw the same gloves on the custodian. Like the other man wrote, you have too much time on your hands. You must be retired.
    Btw: my husband is more nervous about me and the kid (AND our Shepard) with you and your sneaky camera and not gay men. He suggested that if you start taking pictures when HE is there (with us) you better use a very small camera because you will be digging out of a very “personal place”…

    1. Cindy,

      I teach bloodborne pathogens safety awareness to janitors. They use those gloves to evade contact with bodily fluids, such as what you find in bathrooms. They NEVER leave the gloves lying around.

      The gloves I found at Santiago Park were on the train, and in the shrubbery.

      The Santa Ana Police Department conducted a decoy sting operation after we reported on the subject of men lurking at the park and they arrested NINE MEN in one afternoon. Clearly we have a problem.

      Tell your husband that if he elects to assault me he will be arrested. It will cost you a small fortune to bail him out.

      1. To get arrested does not mean much. Were they charged and if so convicted? Been to the park a number of times and can say you are really being paranoid. I would be more worried of you than of gay guys hanging about in the park; at least id know they would be minding their own business.

  9. Man, I’ve lived in the neighborhood by that park for several years now. You are making a big deal about lurkers in the park. From your post, I would be inclined to believe that you are a lurker yourself: walking through the park taking pictures of guys just hanging out in the park… were you lurking in the park at night to watch a hooker get into a car?
    Man, I would hate to be your neighbor.
    Now, i know you may be thinking that I am trying to look the other way. I see guys just standing around in the park when I run in the morning. I have come accustomed to finding rubber gloves and condoms just lying around. What do you expect. Are we not an urbanized area? Is it not a park with plenty of foliage? It happens, but not at the frequency you are claiming. I personally find someone walking some small breed dog more alarming than a couple of homosexuals going to the park to hook up. Sex happens. Before work and on off days, i run through the park and have never seen nearly as many lurking men as you make it seem there are. I have seen other runners, but as for people having sex in the bushes, none.
    ITT: you are just seeing what you want to see.
    men in bushes explanation: pomegranates and other fruit grow on the sides of the bike trail
    men sitting in the park in the daytime explanation: it is a nice refreshing place to go, you do not have to put a sinister twist on everything
    Graffiti: again, you are in an urban area and kids will obviously look for other ways to entertain themselves if they cannot go skate at the bridge because there are little metal bars preventing them from riding the curb or whatever they call it.

    i rate you humorous… rofl (seriously, i rofled)

    1. ursa,

      Because of our coverage the park brush was cleared. It used to be common to find spent condoms and medical gloves on the trail – check out the pictures I took, they speak for themselves.

      Sex happens but it should NOT happen in public parks, period. I am glad the SAPD already arrested some of these lurkers and I hope they do it again.

  10. I used to live a few blocks away. One day I was riding my bike and looked up onto a hillside to see a naked man crouched on the ground. I had another follow me down Santiago blvd. one day when I was on my bike, just trying to drive right next to me. Why do we have to put up with this? It doesn’t matter if you’re gay or straight. Have some class and stay away from children’s areas. This has nothing to do with gay rights. If someone is so pathetic in their private life that they have lie and have sex with boys on their lunch hour so the wife doesn’t find out, or degrade themselves by having to pay for sex from strangers or have sex with them in a foul maggot-ridden public bathroom, they should save their money for therapy instead. It’s time we stopped treating any moron who’s mind extends no farther than their genitals as if they have rights. Human rights are for HUMANS, and should only extend to activities where you act like a decent human being, and not protect perverts and sickos.

  11. wow thanks for postin this me n my son dad go there to walk around and enjoy the view and to think everytime we go i was scared of coyotes around now i have to be worried about men solitary lurkin around the park and i go there b4 i go to school to jog scary and n i would take my son to the big slide to play and i would tell him time to go i felt uneasy bein there you cant just enjoy anything anymore

    1. If it is any consolation, the increased scrutiny seems to be working. I have not seen as many lurkers of late.

  12. Not to worry!!! The SAPD Mounted Unit has been working several times a month since October at the park..I heard that they had been arresting several subjects per night for being in the park after dusk plus people drinking etc. If you live in Park Santiago area you know that years ago the mounted unit worked the park for a long time and they made a great difference. Good job!!

  13. Yes it is very troubling that this behavior occurs this park. It is Lewd conduct. However, there is a double standard in enforcement. I have called the park ranger on more that one occasion to report male and female couples lying on top of each other on top of park benches (most recently at the long slide area, there were 2 couples doing this! Heavily making out (or who knows what else) one couple had a blanket over them…do you think the police respond—NO! Another couple were doing it in their vehicle on the street to the entry of the park–called it in– the ranger asked if it were two men, they did not respond and later the discarded condom was on the curb. Granted there may be more male to male activity, but no one seems to care or enforce the lewd conduct statutes if there are men and woman exhibiting lewd conduct in public!

  14. And you said Art, “My city is not a scummy city” Really?

    Santa Ana’s youth are in a total free fall! This is due to poor parenting, a third world mentality as far as young women being impregnated and a severe lack of education! You have a third world mentality with a lowered standard of civility!

    Where are your law enforcement, your parents and civility?

  15. I stopped by here to take a walk and wait to pick up my wife from work as she works nearby. I sat reading and noticed men standing around as mentioned above. There were also at least 5-6 men parked sitting in their car or sitting next to it in the small parking lot. I sat on the steps near the parkin lot and one guy pulled up in his car and kept staring at me, just sitting there. I kept hearing chatter all around me and didn’t see anyone. After about 20 mins, I felt it was Ike to leave. Needless to say, my experience there led me to search the net to see what is up with this park.

    I will not be going back there and for everyone saying that his person takig pictures and reporting it to the police has too much time, you must be nuts or the ones who are lurking in the bushes!! He is only trying to help make it a better place and safer as well. I say if it looks suspicious, it probably is!

  16. I never thought going to a park was such a crime for single males. I go to parks for walks, bike rides all the time glad to know if I stop to check out shrubbery or sit on a bench to take a breather i’m a lurking creep. Some of you have to much time on your hand posting pics of people on the net like this. Anyone could have taken your pic at anytime placed it on the net and wrote bad things about you, but choose not to I guess. Congrats on being creepier than everyone else in the park Rose the nosey neighbor. I searched the net to find what this park was cause I have drove by it and found some weirdo takes pics of unsuspecting guys and posts them on the net labeling them creeps thanks for keeping a non-gay non-creep away loser!

    1. After I wrote this post the SAPD set up a sting operation and arrested 12 of these perverts.

      Santiago Park is a city park. If you don’t live in Santa Ana you have no business coming to this park. It isn’t a county park.

      1. What? You mean nobody has a right to go to a city park unless they are residents of that city? Bullshit, Art, you are full of it. Your understanding of the US Constitution and the law is laughable and scary. And, yeah, I agree with you that people shouldn’t be having blatant sex in a public park, and I am particularly concerned about people leaving used condoms around, etc., but your conclusion that anybody who is standing around is a “pervert” IS homophobic and stupid, since maybe they are just enjoying the park view (have you ever just sat down to watch the birds or enjoy the environment, or just to be alone with your thoughts away from the surrounding rat race or is the only reason you go to a public park to spy on others through paranoid lenses like a one-man NSA spy? Or maybe they were selling pot, but all you think about is sex? And maybe they are homeless and sleep there and leave their clothes in the tree sometimes, so that makes them “perverts”? And what if they want to meet somebody there and go somewhere else for whatever? What if the guy who picked up a woman was picking up a friend for a ride? And who the hell knows what those gloves were used for or why they were left there, but to you, gloves = perverts??? WTF? And what about Burt Lancaster and that woman in “From Here to Eternity” who were making out and rolling around in the beach sand and ocean water, in full view of millions of Americans? Should they have been arrested too? Were they “perverts” ? And don’t be surprised if some of those perverts are undercover cops hanging out at urinals with their pants unzipped, it’s a common police tactic. Anyway, a cop riding by on a bicycle once in a while should do the trick, but you, you’re a bit scary. Please, leave the spying to Obama.

        1. You clearly didn’t read the post or the comments. This is a real problem at this park. If people want yto hook up they should go to the gay bar in downtown Santa Ana.

          1. I read you comments quite clearly but maybe you should read them again yourself. You come off as obsessive compulsive and scary.

          2. There have been many comments on this post and others by women who have not felt safe at this park. Do you liberals not care about families?

  17. Admin, I despise people like you. I really do.

    Indubitably, you are the creep; and your mental process is similar to to that of a paranoid schizophrenic. Go ahead and call me out on how irrelevant and ignorant my opinion of you is. I just want to say “I’m having a rough f*cking day”

  18. I WAS JUST THERE THIS WEEK AND SO FREAKED OUT BY THE PLACE THAT I CAM HOME AND GOOGLED IT! I took my 4 young sons to the Discovery Science Center late in the afternoon but it closed at 5:00 so I asked if there was a playground nearby where I could take them to run around and wait out rush hour traffic. They said just across the street is a big park and playground. It looked so great at first. It looked like a camp ground setting with a woods-y vibe. And better was that you could see the rock paths the water would take down to the river… facinating for boys and looked so fun for them to explore. But I got a funny feeling within the first 5 minutes there with my little guys the oldest is only 7). There WERE stray men lurkers every where. And there were NO OTHER families nor a single other woman or child in that park. My boys kept running down the hill to get near to the river area. I started getting really agitated at them. They were all into every piece of dirt, rock, pile of leaves, wouldn’t keep their shoes on… We live at the beach and that’s how they are here and fine. But I felt so keenly aware that this was not a place to dig around in any blind piles of foliage (and with no prior knowledge of this article until I came home and googled the place). I was thinking maybe it was kind of a homeless/drug score place. Never thought about gay dudes sexing it up in the bathroom. I couldn’t care less who people have sex with by the way but it does DEFINITELY take the sweet playground-park-in-nature feeling and make it feel sketchy.
    I felt watched there – I started making the children stay closer, then closer to me and finally I annoyed them all so much and myself for feeling so uneasy and panicky for no real reason I could put my finger on. When my 4 year old said he had to go to the bathroom I said you need to hold it or poop in the baby’s diaper because I could see that dudes were coming out of the bathroom. I mean really – how often does a grown man need to use a public bathroom at a playground park and he’s not with kids. Well, now I know.

    1. I am so sorry you had such an awful experience. My wife and I also saw the same thing, back when I first started writing about this. I do expect our City Council to eventually move to ban sex offenders from all of our parks, the sooner the better.

  19. Why can’t the Santa Ana city council stop this? Why don’t the pass the law the other cities are passing in O.C. that bans sex offenders from Santa Ana parks? Art, can’t you help out?

    1. Believe me, I have asked the Council to do so. I am told that they are working on it. My guess is that they were focusing on the outsourcing of the Fire Department and the other resolutions to the budget crisis. I expect this to get done at some point in the next few months.

  20. It is such a shame about Santiago park, it is too beautiful to be that trashed. Shame on u people posting that we are crazy for standing up and uniting as a community to not only make people aware of what goes on here, but to get it cleaned up! I love this park…. Would I ever go here alone? No. Would I ever bring kids here? No would I ever go past sun down. Nope. Thank u guys for making people aware and uniting together to prevent/rid Thr park from this behavior. As for the rest of u, everyone is entitled to their own opinion, even if it’s garbage

  21. i just discovered this website while searching for the park rangers phone number. I was born and raised in Santa Ana, and we used to hold our family reunions at Santiago Park. I haven’t been there in years but drive by it every so often. Its shocking and disgusting to know that men go to this park, or any park or public place for that matter, to cruise and hook up for sex. I’m aware of other parks in Orange County where men hook up in the restrooms to have sex. A friend of mine directed me to a gay cruising website that lists them. If these depraved activities are still occurring, I suggest going to the newspaper, although they probably won’t touch the story with a ten foot pole since some will make it out to be a Gay rights issue. Most parents haven’t even heard of gay cruising so are unaware of the danger their children are in when using the restrooms. I can’t believe the other posters on this site who are attacking the messenger of this story. I have a pretty strong feeling that these posters are either the same perverts who are engaging in these activities at Santiago, or maybe another park. The other possibility is that these people have no children so they just don’t get it. Parents, need to be alerted to the dangers at this park. Thanks for posting, please continue the fight and please post updates.

    1. What “danger” are you talking about, exactly? You may not think you are a homophobe, but calling all gay men pedophiles is a homophobic canard that should have died in the ’50s. The men who go there to cruise do it at night (when kids should be in bed anyhow) and certainly aren’t interested in your snot-nosed crotch-dumplings, trust me.

  22. One of the worst parks to go to….especially in the glorified floral park area …scary area for kids don’t recommend it…..
    It’s a known drug park and homeless park

  23. I agree with Cruz but that can all change if they get that bike trail finished West of the 5 Freeway in Santiago Creek. Art, how soon can it be built?

  24. Buy moutain bikes….and also make our streets safe that’s more important ..lots of kids getting hit these days….speed kills so let’s enforce it

  25. Get the people off the streets when possible and on to Bike trails. You can make streets safe too but get this trail completed.

    1. Moved intot the neighborhood a few months ago and thought it would be great to have a park to walk and run through. Only problem is you have to side step the condoms and lube you find on the trails daily. The loitering is just creepy. This shouldn’t be a gay rights issues. If your lurking in the bushes getting head or beating some dude off your in the wrong. Do that in the privacy of your own home but not around kids and people trying to enjoy themselves. Just imagine walking down a trail and homeboy steps out of the bushes with his hands in his pants. Daily occurance around here. Maybe if people started using the park more and they added more lights it would be better. The biggest problem area is at the parking lot and at the bridge. But mostly by the parking and around the kids play area!!!

  26. Most of the men that frequent this park are Hispanic and married to women. They often have little understanding of their sexual orientation and why they feel so compelled to be with men. There is little, if any, support for their sexual confusion in their culture or religion. And so the park becomes a place that is the outlet for that. Some well-off white men come here in the hopes of exploiting their desperation, but for the most part, people who are not socially, economically, and culturally marginalized are meeting up on the internet for gay sex, not hanging out in parks. The majority of the men in this park are at the bottom of the social hierarchy: they are poor, they are of color, they are uneducated, and they are self-loathing.

    It’s not really frightening–it’s more a sad commentary on our society and the lack of education many people get regarding sexuality. Perhaps the situation would improve if the city put the money it invests in sting operations into programs at the local gay and lesbian center that would be designed to reach out to the surrounding Hispanic community?

    There is a HUGE double standard going on, by the way. I jog through this park every day to get my exercise. Almost every time, I see a man and woman embraced, kissing, cuddling next to each other, etc. And I’ve only ever seen the “gay” men standing alone. It’s interesting that heterosexuals can be much more open about their physical intimacy in the park, but even the suggestion that these pathetic and desperate gay or bi guys might be hooking up unseen in the bushes is considered threatening.

      1. That’s a very flip response to my post. Again, people who are poor, self-loathing, confused, closeted, and desperate are unlikely to show their faces in a local gay bar. If they felt it was safe to do that, this problem would hardly exist in the first place.

        It’s not about excusing the behavior. Of course it isn’t appropriate to have sex in a public park–and going to a gay bar doesn’t provide a place for these men to have sex, by the way, so is hardly a solution. The point is that the solution to the problem is not simplistic; it requires major shifts in cultural attitudes along a multitude of spectrums.

        Amongst other things, I volunteer with the homeless population in Orange County and hear neighbors voice legitimate concerns about having homeless people encamped in their areas. However, the solution that is generally offered is to simply “get them out of here.” I do understand their frustration, just as I understand the concerns about sex in the park. But simply removing people isn’t that easy. How many resources do we drain doing it? And where will they go? They will continue to exist as homeless people even if they are removed from location and put in another. There must be long term systematic solutions put in place.

        The same applies for people who find parks their only viable alternative for meeting others for intimacy. A major crackdown on the park only sends them scurrying elsewhere–to the restrooms at the mall across the street, to the alley behind the stores in downtown Santa Ana, or to the back yard of an abandoned foreclosed house. It’s not enough just to demand that people behaving inappropriately leave an area. We have to provide solutions for why they are engaging in that behavior in that place in the first place.

        Flip responses and anger will only get you so far in making the world a better place. Compassion and practical solutions that address systemic flaws go much, much further.

  27. Why doesn’t Jake open up his home/back yard for these encounters? Sounds like the most compassionate, practical solution.

    1. Why the deliberate effort to shoot down everything I’m saying? Is there no value in it whatsoever? If so, why don’t you tell me how, in specific terms, I’m fundamentally and completely wrong so I can change the way I think? I am open to learning from you. It would be great if you were open to learning from me, though it’s not a prerequisite for us having a civil, open-minded discussion.

      And, again, for the record, I have repeatedly said this behavior is inappropriate. My concern is what to do about it.

  28. Yesterday, while waiting for my mom at her doctor’s appointment, I wanted to take my 3 year-old son outdoors to play and I stumbled across this park off of Memory Lane by the lawn bowling section. I saw a few joggers and bikers, but nobody really stopping to hang out and explore. I did see, as posted above, some men loitering. One was reading, but others were just hanging out. There is certainly nothing wrong with seeking solitude in nature, but these guys were leaning against random trees and one guy was even leaning against some old monkey bars. It made me feel nervous and I was hesitant to walk too far with my son as I didn’t have my bearings. I just had a general uneasiness and I was becoming agitated when my son got too far away from me so we left. The park itself was beautiful and i could tell it had some historical significance so I figured I’d go home and google the park to see what I found. The park is symbolic for the city itself. Some nice parts as well as relics of yesteryear, but if you venture inside, it’s pretty ugly and scary. Having worked in Santa Ana for 5 years, it really seems that the city is becoming a lost cause. 🙁

      1. Sounds like everyone was getting the same creepy feeling when they entered this park. I saw a bunch of grown men and a couple of teenage boys hanging around the jungle gym. They all seemed very lost. Also some clotes and bags in random spots. FIRST AND LAST time I will go to this park.

  29. Alright, had to put in my 2 cents. Yes, the graffiti/shopping cart thing is a bit much, as it is a city. Graffiti happens. Shopping carts left in random places happen. Trash happens, and creepers happen. BUT, I, like others who have previously commented felt SO creeped out by this place that I had to google it. My friend and I decided to take a walk there yesterday. The first thing we noticed was the abundance of men sitting in their parked cars in the “parking” area. Kinda strange. Like…LOTS of them. Almost every car there was occupied by a man, with his windows down, just watching. So we get out, start walking, and notice there WERE a lot of men, just kind of “hanging out” loitering if you will. Kinda weird. THEN, as we were walking along a trail above the parking lot, a woman yells to us “Excuse me, ladies! Be careful, because theres a man over there, hiding in the bushes! Just over there!” *Points* And a small boy, maybe 12, was near her, and beamed in with how the man tried to lure him over to him. UMM, creepy. We didnt see any gloves, condoms, condom wrappers or anything else “suspicious” while on our walk, like previous posters have. But needless to say, we avoided the area where the supposed man in the bushes was lurking…we actually left the park, took the streets all the way around it, and came back into the park to get to our car. Overall, it was just a really “off” kind of experience. Like, both me and my friend just felt weary about being there shortly after arriving. Needless to say, it wont be my first choice the next time I decide to stroll in the park.

    1. I agree. What is this creep doing at night in the park taking guys Pictures. Is he a serial killer?, Stalker? or some other deviated create. Who in the world goes to the Park and take a pictures of trash and people hanging out? Specially man. Is in it what the park is all about it? To hang out? Does he has a proof that “gay” man meeting to have sex ? or has he took picture of a two man having sex? I bet he does not. If anyone should get a life is the guy with the Blackberry (btw- Blackberry is outdated cell phone get a new one) that he should get life. Or change park. He is not the Law Peace Officer. Taking someones pictures in the park it is just creepy maybe he is a stalker? Ask yourself. Why would I take a guys pictures at the park? Peace….

  30. I used to go to this park when I was a teenager in the 70s because the local YMCA New Horizons program had a day camp there. We also did a nature walk at night and I loved this place so much back then. I havent been there in a very very long time but am sad to hear about all of the issues going on 🙁

    I miss my old santa ana!!

    1. Man you can still remember? You know what YMCA Stands for? So you were legally joining the gay man association under the pretext of YMCA, ha ha ha…
      Anyone who is going to that park and is complaining is a Voyageur period. No exceptions. Closet case. Peace Out.

      1. Um I was a teenage GIRL at the time and it was basically an athletic club then. They had gym classes and such. So as a FEMALE i had nothing to do with joining a gay club. The only thing it ever stood for was Young Mens Christian Association, not the young mens gay association. Perhaps english is not your first language; however I’m pretty sure you can read.

      2. I was a teenage girl so your point makes no sense. I haven’t been to that park in at least 38 years so I was obviously not complaining about it; i was merely stating that i used to go there all the time and that it is sad what it has become. obviously english is your second language; however perhaps you should read more closely before you comment. And it’s “voyeur”,

    2. The men leaning against trees sre undercover pigs,restroom masterbaters r pigs trying to entrap gay men. Courts have ruled its illegal to do selective gay stings. Sounds like u. Guys have sex hangups .

  31. Im aware of the park and its past but I never seen people having sex or meeting up with males I use to live off santiago and 17th st one thing I did experience at Santiago Park late 12 am 2001 . I wont ever go back at night. I love santa ana. O.C. I know it was very late came down with 3 other friends to have a quick smoke break outside the truck in parking area for 10 min then when we heard a woman crying out for help in the bottom of the creek and voice.was getting louder and and even closer it made me have chills and so did the others because there was no one else out there but us we all heard it in the air saying help me and we ran to the truck with one door open while driving out the parks parking lot hanging half way in the truck scared because what we heard something that wasn’t normal ..i didnt know about her . Meaning an incident from the late 80’s.shes still unknown till this day and I looked her up and Google it was too real of an experience ill never forget but the park is peace full during the days when I would go. the story of the woman back in march 4 1988 a young woman in her 20’s was murdered and decapitated ..I was wondering if anyone that lives near or have been there late night and has ever.heard anything about dont go to parks at night people..learn from me 🙂 thanks for the post art..

    1. I just came upon that story today, that’s so scary poor girl they never found who did that to her . I have never been to Santiago park and never will. I’ll stick to my back yard .

  32. Was there today, and the park was FILLED with lurking men. Near the children’s area. I can’t bring my children back there. So sad!

  33. and that’s nothing because at night people have made parties under the bridge on main st and behind the hotel parties start from 1 am to 4 or 5 am with music and liquor

  34. The same thing was happening at Fairmont Park in Riverside for decades. Gay dudes would “lurk”around at dusk and at night. People in the neighborhood took pictures, wrote letters and made official complaints. The gays stopped cruising the park. Fixed that problem.

    Only thing is, gang bangers have made it “their park” now. Broken botttles, assaults and muggings. Felt safer with the gays. They kept to themselves.

  35. There is no question ……that if men found out there are women roaming about out there , trust me. It would be crawling with straight men. Married and all. Are people at bars standing around pervs as well? They are seeking the same thing….I dont like any of it ….but c, mon …as long as liberal ideas are pushed for everyone ….then every one want to do the same no matter what it takes. Or where.

  36. Maybe these men should be having sex in the Oval Office under the desk, or pay a porn star and order a bride and grab her by the *****. Haha, you guys are all pathetic. Typical OC, this happens everywhere, including your own homes. Oh, and btw, same cops arresting these people are also the ones hooking up, no lie!

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