ITHACA, NY -- City of Ithaca and Tompkins County officials and law enforcement are discouraging people from attending the planned rally in downtown Ithaca on Saturday.
Tensions have been building in the city between opposite protesting groups, as well as between police and protesters. Police Chief Dennis Nayor put out a statement earlier this week urging peace, but on Thursday evening multiple protesters were arrested after converging on the police station.
For their full statement, read below:
"As local government and law enforcement leaders we are strongly discouraging attendance at any political rallies planned in downtown Ithaca for this weekend.
Planned rallies have not applied for or received permission to hold a lawful assembly – and we have serious concerns about potential violent conflict.?
City and County law enforcement officers will be on hand, but we cannot guarantee the safety of participants.
Our community has always prized the First Amendment right to free speech.? Over the last several months we have demonstrated an understanding and willingness to allow even disruptive protests. Any acts of violence take away from the ability for movements to be heard and for conversations to be had. We are looking forward to more constructive conversations with community members moving forward.
?As the leaders of local government and law enforcement, we all feel that tempers are quickly spiraling out of control. We implore our community to please work to find other outlets for political expression and help us avoid a potentially tragic clash in the heart of our City."?
Chairwoman, Tompkins County Legislature
Mayor, City of Ithaca
Tompkins County Sheriff
Chief, Ithaca City Police Department
Tompkins County Administrator