Report: Unprepared Charlottesville police did almost everything exactly wrong

Report: Unprepared Charlottesville police did almost everything exactly wrong
(Image: Screen grab of CBS News video, YouTube)

[Ed. – We had some previews of this back in August.  I’m not convinced all small and medium-size cities need to have urban combat-trained police, on the scale that would have been necessary here.  But the city authorities could have gotten better-trained assistance from elsewhere in preparation for the 12 August rally, which was known about well in advance.  The “let them fight” mentality doesn’t have a logical explanation for it in true public-welfare terms.  It frankly has a political whiff.]

[P]olice were not properly prepared or equipped to deal with the situation and once crowds of white supremacists and counter-protesters began battling in the street the police did almost nothing. In fact, this was a strategy on the part of the police who intended to allow skirmishes to escalate so they could declare an unlawful assembly. Police Chief Al Thomas even said “Let them fight…” as people began battling in the streets. …

Charlottesville police were ordered to put on their riot gear which meant retreating from barricades to suit up, a process that took them about fifteen minutes. The report notes that some of the officers had never worn the equipment [emphasis added].

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