ST. LOUIS — Crime in the area has some being extra cautious after a rifle sighting at a children's soccer game put a wrench in this season's plans.
"It's the world's game, it brings people together," said Tom Michler.
Michler is the co-founder of New Dimensions, the organization that oversees the SouthSide Rec soccer league.
"The first couple of years we had 10-15 people show up now we have over 150 people that come out to this field and we hear consistently how important this field is to this neighborhood," Michler said.
He said at their last game, something unexpected showed up on their turf.
"Parents on the sideline witnessed a couple of people carrying guns, one was an assault rifle," he said.
The sight startled parents and some players causing them to call a time out on this weekend's game at McKinley Park, Fox Park and Marquette Park.
"It changed that moment, it's difficult to comprehend why that weapon would need to be at a 5- and 6-year-old's game. At 9:15 on a Saturday morning."
It happened at a Cardinals Care field in Fox Park, a park that has its fair share of issues in recent weeks.
Tom said the group is working with the city leaders to make sure their soccer program is safe and enjoyable for everyone.
But Mayda Mcinnis-Nash, a mom and New Dimensions coach, said everyone has to play their position.
"You can't just shelter your kids, we have to, as parents and the community, overtake the area and get off the sidelines and become more engaged," she said.