May 23, 2018

Local agencies assist at highly publicized Newnan rally

(Photo: John David Mercer/USA TODAY)

(Newnan, GA) — Several law enforcement officers and other emergency personnel from the City of Franklin and Heard County traveled to Newnan on Saturday to aid Newnan and Coweta County during a rally staged by the National Socialist Movement.

About 25-30 members of the Neo-Nazi group rallied at Greenville Street Park in downtown Newnan.

In addition to the Neo-Nazi group, hundreds of counter protesters flooded the streets, however, the largest presence at the event were police officers and members of other law enforcement agencies.

Nearly 800 officers and other officials from around the state were on hand to prevent the type of civil unrest seen in Charlottesville almost a year ago. Many of the officers were in full tactical garb.

An eight foot tall fence and two barricades were erected between counter protesters and the NSM with hundreds of officers in riot gear to prevent violence.

There were no injuries reported during the event and less than a dozen arrests of counter protesters on minor charges including the wearing of masks, disorderly conduct, pedestrian in a roadway, and obstruction of officers.

According to a report by the Newnan Times-Herald, the large police presence was gathered due to an estimated 8,000-12,000 protesters that were expected to attend.

Franklin Police Chief Kevin Hannah was glad to be of assistance to a neighboring county after they requested aid.

“The Franklin Police Department along with numerous other local and state agencies detached public safety personnel to assist the City of Newnan and Coweta County, after a request for mutual aid assistance was disseminated,” said Chief Hannah in a statement Monday. “We were pleased to assist our neighboring community, knowing that if we were faced with a similar type event with the potential for violence and property damage, they would provide our community with as many resources as possible. I was relieved to hear that only a small amount of arrests were made during this event, and most importantly, no injuries or property damage were reported.”

Newnan Police Chief Douglas “Buster” Meadows was thankful for the assistance from around the state.

“To those citizens of Newnan and Coweta, and all the agencies who came to assist, there was such an outpouring of support who helped make this task a big success,” Meadows told the Times-Herald. “Saying ’thank you’ isn’t even adequate – it goes beyond any description of support.”

The rally received media attention from around the nation.

(Article photo courtesy of USA Today)

Comments

  1. Great job by all of the different law enforcement agencies.

  2. Robert Montgomery says:

    Life event law enforcement training at its finest! Thank you!

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