Busy Weekend For Police as Multiple Events Bring Thousands to Downtown Salt Lake City
Oct 6, 2019, 6:31 AM | Updated: 6:31 am
SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – From the 189th Semiannual General Conference for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, to the surprise Kanye West “Sunday Series” concert, to the march to raise awareness for child abuse- it has been a busy weekend for police officers in downtown Salt Lake City.
All of their efforts paid off as there were no major incidents even with tens of thousands of people all coming together. Officers handled people crossing streets in multiple locations and a lot of traffic.
“That is a lot of vehicles and pedestrians coming in and out of the area,” said Sgt. Brandon Shearer of the Salt Lake City Police Department.
Salt Lake City police officers started their day early with thousands of people coming together for the morning session of the 189th Semiannual General Conference at temple square.
“We do bring a few extra officers just to maintain safety and security in the city,” Shearer said. “We have over 20,000 people at each session within a two-hour period. That means there’s about 40,000 to 50,000 people in a two- to four- block area.”
At The Gateway Plaza, they were prepared for the thousands of fans rushing to to see the West’s improptu “Sunday Service” concert.
“We found out on Friday, with everyone else,” Shearer said, “We have to be ready all the time because there are so many people in the area.”
Officers also stood watch as hundreds of people walked to the Utah State Capitol to raise awareness for child abuse.
According to Shearer, part of the officers’ training includes keeping up with national trends and implementing new practices.
“There’s always a little bit of luck involved but we hope that with our preparation and the work that we put in that again we will be able to keep the citizens of Salt Lake as well as the thousands of people visiting from outside the city and state safe,” Shearer said.
That training paid off.
It was a smooth experience for families like the Shaws.
“In the past we haven’t felt that way but they have really done so much to help the downtown be safe and we always feel safe when we come down here and we love coming to downtown Salt Lake City,” Brenda Shaw said.
Police also had their hands full Saturday evening with the Jazz game which drew thousands more to downtown. According to Sgt. Sheraer, 25 additional officers were on call to help with traffic control.