News & Politics

Cleveland Tightens RNC Security Following Dallas Massacre

Police officers watch as a protest parade approaches them during the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla. on Wednesday, August 29, 2012. (AP Photo/Alex Menendez)

Security plans for the Republican National Convention have tightened up following the massacre in Dallas that left five police officers dead and seven wounded.

Deputy Police Chief Ed Tomba told Reuters on Friday, “We have got to make some changes without a doubt.”

Tomba is also Cleveland’s chief of convention security. He has contacted the out-of-state police departments that have loaned officers for convention security to assure them their officers will be safe.

“I wrote an email reassuring them we are prepared and let them know we cannot pull the plan off without them,” Tomba said.

Are police departments pulling out for fear of another attack on law enforcement? Sounds like it.

Cleveland only has 1,700 officers for the convention and the city had planned to augment their force with 3,000 additional officers from other cities.

Perhaps this was a little premature?:

The city of Cleveland agreed Wednesday to allow protests closer to the site of the Republican National Convention next month, approving rule changes that increase the amount of space demonstrators can occupy and extend the amount of time that demonstrations will be permitted.

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A federal judge ruled last week that Cleveland’s original regulations for demonstrations and marches during the convention infringed on the right of free expression and ordered city officials and the A.C.L.U. to negotiate new rules.

The new rules, completed Wednesday by the Cleveland Board of Control, extend the parade route, which is the area where demonstrators are permitted to march. They allow protests to go through parts of downtown Cleveland to give some larger groups more time to demonstrate, he said.

“People will have more opportunities to be seen by delegates especially with the new parade route,” Mr. David said. “These regulations are a significant improvement from what we had seen before.”

Despite the rules changes, the demonstrators will not pass directly by the Quicken Loans Arena, which is where the nominating convention will take place. But they will now be able to march through areas around the arena that were previously off limits, including some public parks.