I-TEAM: 911 calls reveal police were warned of possible violence hours before riots downtown

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CLEVELAND (WJW) – The Fox 8 I-Team has found several 911 calls made to Cleveland police hours before the May 30 riot warning officials about possible violence.

One woman told dispatchers she was hearing from her son that people from all over the area were going to the protest, and she feared there would not be enough police.

“I think cops from other districts need to get down here,” the woman told the dispatcher. “The little bit you got in Cleveland is not going to hold.”

Another woman said people were being told not to bring guns but to “bring bats.”

Several city council members and residents have said they don’t believe there were enough officers downtown to handle the crowds.  

Mayor Frank Jackson and Police Chief Calvin Williams said the city was prepared.

The Cuyahoga County Sheriff, however, admitted he had “under-planned” for the protest. 

The riot happened after a peaceful protest was held to express outrage for the murder of George Floyd

Violent protesters caused millions of dollars in damage to downtown businesses. Some businesses remain boarded up and owners do not know when they will reopen. 

Several 911 calls during the riot were from terrified residents and witnesses. 

“We are near the protest and a guy got shot in the eye,” one woman told the dispatcher. 

Others reported windows being broken. Others felt their lives were in danger. 

“We have a gang outside our building and they are attacking us,” the woman said. 

Police have since made over 100 arrests and are continuing to investigate.  

Read more on the violent protests, here.

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