Downtown Raleigh business owners take precautions ahead of planned weekend demonstrations

RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- Some Downtown Raleigh businesses were putting up boards Friday afternoon ahead of planned weekend protests. One owner says he heard of barricades being placed around the State Capitol and decided to take his own precautions to protect property.

His store was damaged last May and it costs tens of thousands of dollars.

The violence prompted the City of Raleigh to set up a text alert system.

More than 800 people sign up for Raleigh's new text alert system

It was launched Monday and more than 800 people, who registered received notifications, got their first message Friday about demonstrations.

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Emotions have been running very high in regards to recent events in headlines, ABC11 sits down with Dr. Mehul Mankad who has tips on how to cope.

Mayor Mary-Ann Baldwin has a message for folks planning to participate.

"What I've been encouraging is people to come and demonstrate in peace," said Baldwin. "Please don't do some of the things we saw last Sunday. That will lead to arrests."

Raleigh police declare 'unlawful assembly' of demonstrators downtown, make arrests

ABC11 reached out to the Raleigh Police Department about security measures.

A spokesperson said in a statement:

"The Raleigh Police Department does not release details regarding public security plans, operational plans, tactical strategies, or emergency action plans, as that information is not public record per NCGS 132-1.7. However, it can be said that Department personnel who are responsible for security and logistical planning consider and evaluate many factors, including events that have occurred elsewhere, as they make safety and staffing decisions. As is always the case, we ask anyone participating to notify any of our uniformed officers or call 911 if they see anyone or anything that appears suspicious."
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