'Significant' security presence for Corporate 5K in Orlando
ORLANDO, Fla. (WOFL FOX 35 ORLANDO) -
The Boston Marathon bombings have prompted Orlando police to increase the number of officers the department will have for Thursday's popular IOA Corporate 5K, which will draw thousands to Lake Eola in downtown Orlando.
Chief Paul Rooney said that he has been in constant contact with Orange County Sheriff Jerry Demings, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, other city, state, federal, and local officials.
"Public safety is the number one concern. While we have plans in place to ensure the safety of our residents and visitors, the Orlando Police Department is taking appropriate precautionary measures, including additional staffing at events for the comfort of those in attendance," the Chief Rooney said in a statement sent to FOX 35.
Jon Hughes just returned from the Boston Marathon, where he heard the two explosions after completing the race. Hughes is the organizer of the Corporate 5K and flew back to Orlando Tuesday with even more determination to make sure Thursday's event will be safe for the 16,000 runners and walkers.
"We have police officers at every entrance and exit. They will be out there at the staging area itself, and we of course, have them at every major intersection," he said. "We have them along the course."
Chief Rooney would not discuss specific security measures, but he said there will be a "significant law enforcement and security presence" for the upcoming race. Organizers said that the police want no backpacks at the event Thursday evening.
"We really we need to limit any types of bags and so forth that are coming into the park," Hughes added.
Some tell FOX 35 they will run at the Orlando event to remember Boston's victims and to send the message that we are not intimidated.