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Columbus Police Plan Increased Security for Pride Festival

June 14, 2016  | 

In response to the deadly shooting at a gay nightclub in Orlando Sunday, Columbus (OH) Division of Police Chief Kim Jacobs announced on Monday that there will be "significantly more" police officers present for Pride festivities in the city, which will start Friday and run through Sunday, reports the Columbus Dispatch.

Lori Gum, Pride parade coordinator, said security has increased for Pride since the Boston Marathon bombing in 2013.

This year, there will be more officers, both in uniform and undercover, for the 35th annual Columbus Pride Festival, but Chief Jacobs declined to give exact numbers.

"We don't like to give out our numbers because I think it's important that our tactical decision-making is something we try to keep close to our vest," she said, adding that she wanted people to know about the undercover officers to make them more comfortable that security is around.

Security is "absolutely our biggest expense and rightfully so," Gum said.

She noted that what happened in Orlando highlights why Pride festivals began in the first place, and that, "we're going to go out there in numbers and show, 'This will not stand.' "

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