Jails in Mecklenburg, North Carolina plan to boost staffing in advance of the Democratic National Convention which takes place in Charlotte, NC at the beginning of next month. Officials plan to increase staff by about 30 percent to handle the expected influx of protesters.
Authorities anticipate as many as 10,000 protests could descend on the city in a few weeks. Sgt. Stephen Morin tells the Charlotte Observer “We’re hearing from a lot of outside people that are telling us to expectthe perfect storm of angry people. Some of them are goingto want to get some street credit by getting arrested.”
So-called “arrestables” have been a staple of the Occupy movement which set up special websites and Twitter accounts to keep track of arrests nationwide. As of last week, the total connected to the groups activities is 7,387.
Police are said to be exercising “high tolerance” for protest behavior, which apparently means that anything short of violence toward people and property will not automatically result in an arrest, though it may lead to a citation. Police are promising plenty of manpower to make arrests if it becomes necessary.
The court system is also clearing a path for potential mayhem. No trials will be held the week of the convention and small claims court will also be suspended to allow judges to focus on handling those arrested in connection with protests.
Occupy has set up a nice looking website to promote its special brand of “southern hospitality” but at present there are no activities listed on the “Call to Action” page. Perhaps people will turn out in droves. Or perhaps this will be one of several occasions, like the Occupy Spring where Occupiers were big on promises and small on delivery.