New York City plans largest-ever Election Day police presence

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New York City Police Department will assign more than 5,000 officers to elections-related duty Tuesday, in what is the largest Election Day detail the force has ever deployed, officials said Monday.


In addition to providing security at the more than 1,000 polling places across the city’s five boroughs, the NYPD is charged with handling security at results-watching parties being hosted by both presidential candidates in Manhattan, New York officials said as they detailed Election Day plans at a press conference Monday in Times Square.

“This is by far the largest election detail that the NYPD has ever had,” said NYPD Chief of Department Carlos Gomez, noting that it is the first time in 70 years that both candidates’ campaigns will be in New York City.

Democrat Hillary Clinton’s campaign will be based at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center, while Republican Donald Trump’s campaign will be at the New York Hilton Midtown.

The 5,000 officers assigned to elections duty is double the number usually assigned on Election Day and is more comparable to security arrangements for New Year’s Eve and Pope Francis’ recent visit.

“We know that the eyes of the world will be on New York City,” said New York Mayor Bill de Blasio. “We have an obligation not only to the people of this city but to the country to make sure that tomorrow, all through the day and tomorrow night, goes smoothly and goes well. We have extraordinary resources in place to do that.”

In addition to elections security, the NYPD will have counterterrorism units out in force.

Last week, FBI officials warned law enforcement in New York, Virginia and Texas that authorities were vetting information they received that mentioned the threat of an al Qaeda terrorist attack ahead of Election Day.

Officials in Virginia, New York and Texas confirmed being briefed, but authorities cautioned that the threat was general in nature and lacked specificity. Counterterrorism investigators were reviewing information that mentioned the three states as potential targets.

NYPD’s Chief of Counterterrorism James Waters said Monday that officials were investigating the source of the threat information to determine its credibility.

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott said Friday that law enforcement officials were “continuing to monitor the situation in close coordination with the Texas Department of Public Safety.”

Over the weekend, the Islamic State called on supporters to attack U.S. voters on Election Day and demanded that Muslims not participate in the democratic process.

New York officials said they are well-prepared to deal with any threats that might emerge.

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