Cleveland police to increase patrols downtown on New Year’s Eve for party, protest

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CLEVELAND- Cleveland police will increase the number of officers downtown on Wednesday night for New Year’s Eve festivities and planned protests.

Gates for Cleveland Rocks New Year’s Eve open at 8 p.m. on Mall B, next to the Cleveland Convention Center. Organizers are expecting more than 20,000 for the event in its second year.

In addition, protestors from the group Puncture the Silence will rally, starting at 9:30 p.m. at Public Square. The demonstrators said they are seeking justice for 12-year-old Tamir Rice, who was shot and killed by a Cleveland officer last month, as well as the two people killed in the 2012 police chase.

Police Sgt. Ali Pillow said there will be more officers patrolling downtown because of the New Year’s celebration.  He also said the division is aware of the protests and will keep an eye on the situation.

Cleveland police would not elaborate on any specific plans for downtown security.

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