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Government & Politics

Cleveland Police Say They Will Be Prepared For Republican Convention

photo of Cleveland Convention Center

About 100 days remain before the Republican National Convention comes to Cleveland, and police Wednesday told City Council they will be prepared.

During the convention, Cleveland police will be responsible for managing traffic and crowds outside of the secure zone downtown. In addition, Police Chief Calvin Williams says he expects thousands of law enforcement officers in Cleveland. But even with so much happening downtown, police say they plan to staff local neighborhoods at 115 percent.

Deputy Chief Ed Tomba said Cleveland is not buying “military-style” gear ahead of the convention. Without specifying, though, he said the city would have other resources in reserve in the case of emergencies.

“They will be staged in different locations across the city for an emergency response. But our first and foremost posture is officers in Class A uniforms, officers on bicycles, foot patrol and on horses.”

The Secret Service says no convention-goers will be allowed to bring guns inside the secure zone. But Cleveland police brass say people would be within their rights to lawfully carry firearms elsewhere in public rights-of-way. Without elaborating, police said they're still sorting out questions about that with the city’s law department.