by: Erica Bryant Updated:CHARLOTTE, N.C. —
Charlotte-Mecklenburg police are asking Charlotte residents to reconsider leaving during the Democratic National Convention.
CMPD has thousands of extra officers coming in to help for security during the DNC where protests are planned. The police don’t want demonstrators to be the only ones on the city streets.
“This is our city. We don't have to give over our city to anyone,” said Deputy Police Chief Harold Medlock.
For people coming to make trouble in Charlotte, Medlock wants another deterrent – Charlotte residents.
“Locals and adults being on the streets for events always helps us,” Medlock said.
It's a strategy that's worked before.
Medlock pointed to Speed Street and Fourth of July celebrations uptown. When community groups like Men Who Care Global quietly mingled in the crowd, crime dropped.
“Our local citizens being on the streets looking visitors in the eyes that might have some idea of doing mischief or criminal activity might give those people an opportunity to think about what they are doing,” Medlock said.
Being present is a public service for safety he said anyone can do without being in uniform.
“I’m looking for folks in Charlotte who are willing to come up and enjoy the event, but also if they see misbehavior occur either let us know or calm the person down,” Medlock said.
Medlock added people should call 911 or reach out to a cop on the street.