CMPD receives hundreds of calls concerning possible 'torch rally'

NBC Charlotte is asking if the deadly riots that played out in Charlottesville could soon take over the streets of uptown.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – NBC Charlotte is asking if the deadly riots that played out in Charlottesville could soon take over the streets of uptown Charlotte.

A hate group, who rallied support in Charlottesville, posted a flyer on Twitter inviting people to rally at Marshall Park in December.

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police says they’ve received hundreds of calls from the community with concerns about the planned rally.

RELATED: Will a 'Charlottesville-like' rally come to Charlotte?

Police say they tried to get a hold of the group called "Anticom," but have not been successful so far.

CMPD says they will be prepared for whatever happens.

“Social media post is one thing, talking to an actual person is another,” says CMPD Deputy Chief Jeff Estes.

However, just a few words on a flyer tweeted by Anticom set off a social media firestorm. The group is asking people to bring torches to the rally. It comes just over a month after the deadly riots in Charlottesville.

“We have learned lessons throughout the years, not just from Charlottesville,” says Deputy Chief Estes.

Now, CMPD is responding to 400 or 500 callers weighing in about the possible event.

“People out in the community who express concern about what the group stands for,” says Deputy Chief Estes.

However, police say it’s unlikely the group would be denied a permit for the rally.

“It’s a very high bar to be able to tell someone they can’t exercise their Constitutional right to assemble,” says Deputy Chief Estes.

“Racists and racism is not welcome here in Charlotte,” says local activist, Jibril Hough.

Hough is already organizing a counter rally.

“Just in the past day or two, hundreds possibly thousands have interest in supporting the event,” Hough told NBC Charlotte earlier this week.

As far as weapons at the event, Deputy Chief Estes says North Carolina is liberal with open carry laws.

However, he says they won’t tolerate violence.

“If there’s a contentious situation and a person is carrying a firearm, they can be expected to be challenged by us,” says Deputy Chief Estes. “If things do happen, it won’t be from lack of preparedness on our part.”

NBC Charlotte has also tried multiple times to reach Anticom but have not heard back.

© 2017 WCNC.COM


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