Security beefed up in Washington, DC and Hudson Valley in advance of Inauguration Day
Between last week's riot at the U.S. Capitol, and word of possible armed protests being planned at all 50 state capitols, police all across the nation are on heightened alert, and that includes law enforcement in the Hudson Valley.
Westchester County police officials say they are closely following events in Washington, D.C., and they are monitoring all available law enforcement intelligence information about any potential protests in New York.
They have additional officers on patrol so you may notice an increase now through Inauguration Day as a precaution.
Meanwhile, more than 20,000 National Guard troops are being brought in to help keep Washington, D.C. secure while the Secret Service handles security planning for President-elect Joe Biden's swearing in next Wednesday. Law enforcement and the National Guard have already begun expanding security perimeters around the Capitol, the White House, and other key buildings.
The increase comes as President Donald Trump released a taped statement condemning last week's violence and calling for calm. "Whether you are on the right or on the left, a Democrat or a Republican. There is never a justification for violence. No excuses, no exceptions, America is a nation of laws."
Westchester County police officials say they also have detectives assigned to several federal task forces, including the FBI Joint Terrorist Task Force, which gives they say gives them real-time access to any credible threats against Westchester or our region.
Many people who spoke with News 12 say some extra preparation is a good thing. "We trust our police and they will take care of it and I hope for peace," says Sue Bayan, of Yonkers.
As many violent riots and protests took place in numerous U.S. cities over the summer, protests and marches in the Hudson Valley were for the most part lawful and peaceful. People we're speaking with say they believe that will be the case again. "I think maybe Albany, I think maybe Washington, something is going to happen but I know that here in Yonkers we're going to be safe," says Joe Gross, of Yonkers. "I can't see anything in Westchester it's too far removed from Washington," adds Ned Kelly, of Yonkers.