Metro Council members: Bring families, not concealed guns, to Th - wave3.com-Louisville News, Weather & Sports

Metro Council members: Bring families, not concealed guns, to Thunder

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Some people have said they will stay away from the event because of recent downtown violence, while others have suggested on social media that they will arm themselves. Some people have said they will stay away from the event because of recent downtown violence, while others have suggested on social media that they will arm themselves.
Councilman Kevin Kramer Councilman Kevin Kramer
Councilman David Tandy Councilman David Tandy
Clint Hayes Clint Hayes

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Metro Council members advised people not to bring concealed guns to Thunder Over Louisville this Saturday.

Some people have said they will stay away from the event because of recent downtown violence, while others have suggested on social media that they will arm themselves.

Metro Police have proven they can handle large crowds during Thunder and other events, said Metro Councilman Kevin Kramer, a Republican who represents Jeffersontown.

"One of my greatest fears is someone is going to decide they can solve this problem by themselves," Kramer said. "They're going to come down with a weapon and something is going to go horribly wrong."

The crowds expected for the Thunder air show and fireworks display will be enough to keep criminals away from Waterfront Park, he said.

New surveillance cameras and more than 1,100 law enforcement officers patrolling the area should also allay safety concerns, said Councilman David Tandy, a Democrat who represents downtown.

"There's certainly safety in numbers, and that's what we'll experience on Saturday," Tandy said. "I know our family will be out there enjoying the fireworks and the other festivities, and we encourage everyone else to do the same."

People should call 911 if they see crimes taking place in the park, he said.

Crews installed more than 20 surveillance cameras in the park on Tuesday, although the workers said the cameras still needed to be hooked up to electricity.

Several cameras are on the Big Four Bridge, which has also had a police officer stationed nearby since the March 22 mob violence.

Clint Hayes, who has attended Thunder for years with his children, said he had no concerns about violence.

"I don't think there'll be trouble because of the security and the crowds," Hayes said, adding that he plans to watch the fireworks from New Albany to escape the crowds.

Metro Police Chief Steve Conrad will testify before the Council's Public Safety Committee on Wednesday about the steps he's taken to improve downtown security since the night of violence.

Kramer said he hopes Conrad will ultimately task mounted patrols and officers on bicycles with waterfront safety. Metro also needs to hire more officers to get on equal ground with similar-sized cities, Kramer said.

Copyright 2014 WAVE 3 News. All rights reserved.

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