INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. - The Commander of IMPD’s branch of Homeland Security says Hoosiers can expect to see more law enforcement downtown this weekend.
Starting Thursday night and extending throughout the weekend, Commander Tom Sellas says there will be an increased law enforcement presence at all major events. Including Sunday’s Colts game, the Fountain Square Music Festival and a series of Garth Brooks concerts taking place at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.
“We always have these resources at these events, but you usually don’t see a lot of them. This time we’re going to be a little more overt, we’re going to let the public know that yes we’re out here, we’re prepared as best as we can be, for them to have a safe a good time,” Sellas said.
According to Sellas, the covert to overt switch for certain resources is designed to send two messages.
For anyone who feels concerned about attending weekend events, it’s a message of safety and security. But for anyone who may have criminal intentions, it’s a message of strength.
“We’re letting you know that hey we are prepared for this, because what people don’t see might also be the person who wants to perpetrate a crime or something like that. Someone who thinks they can get away with it. Right now you’re not going to be able to get away with it,” Sellas said.
Ahead of the Thursday night Garth Brooks Concert, the increased presence of law enforcement was highly visible. Sellas says in the end, it’s about allowing people to feel safe so they’re free to have a good time.
Every fan underwent intense security to get into Bankers Life ahead of the show.
Despite some apprehension, most people said they were not about to let it keep them from having a good time.
“It’s definitely in the back of my mind, but its not going to stop me either,” said concert-goer Annie Caruso.
Others at the concert had similar thoughts.
“It’s kind of nice just to show that we’re all still here,” said Brooks fan Elizabeth Smith, “and its not going to change.”
Moving forward, Sellas says homeland security will be re-evaluating how they secure big events (standard procedure anytime tragedies like the one in Las Vegas happens) and working with local venues on how to improve safety.
Thursday’s show was the first of five sold out shows Brooks and his wife, Tricia Yearwood, are performing in Indianapolis this weekend.
“To quote Garth Brooks, 'The show must go on,’ and it was really that sense of music and healing through music that brought us all together tonight,” said fan Louis Rubino.