D.C. Mayor Bowser advises residents to avoid downtown in anticipation of protests

Washington-DC

WASHINGTON (WDVM) — Washington D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser advised residents to avoid the downtown area and “people who are coming here to look for confrontation” in a Monday morning press conference.

The District is preparing for demonstrators from across the country coming to protest the certification of President-elect Joe Biden’s electoral victory on Tuesday and Wednesday. In December, far-right protestors vandalized historically black churches and were involved in various altercations.

Mayor Bowser welcomed demonstrators to hold what she called first amendment demonstrations, but denounced those looking to cause harm.

“We will not allow people to incite violence, intimidate our residents, or cause destruction in our city,” said Bowser.

Newly sworn-in Chief Robert Contee of the Metropolitan Police Department made it clear that any demonstrators planning on bringing firearms downtown will be arrested. Numerous firearms arrests have been made at recent protests in the District.

Signage was placed Monday in and around the area of planned protests to warn demonstrators that firearms are not permitted.

“Anyone in violation of the posted signs, anyone in violation of the District of Columbia law will be arrested,” said Contee.

Chief Contee confirmed that the National Guard will be assisting MPD for crowd management and traffic control.

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