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Metro Police to have 'highly visible presence' at Nashville Pride Festival

FILE - The 2015 Nashville Pride Festival. Metro Nashville Police Chief Steve Anderson issued a statement Monday, June 13, 2016 indicating police will have a "highly visible presence" during the upcoming Nashville Pride Festival. (WZTV)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WZTV) - Metro Nashville Police Chief Steve Anderson issued a statement Monday indicating police will have a "highly visible presence" during the upcoming Nashville Pride Festival.

The festival will be held at the Public Square Park on June 24 and 25.

In a statement posted to the Nashville.gov website, Chief Anderson says, "I have directed Lt. David Leavitt in Special Events to develop a staffing plan with extra-duty officers that clearly demonstrates this police department's commitment to safety for all festival goers. Without going into specifics, this department will have a quite visible presence in and around Public Square Park on the 24th and 25th as part of our mission to advance safety, fairness and equality for all."

The 28th Nashville Pride Festival will be celebrated with heavy hearts.

"Horrifying event, horrifying event over the past weekend but it's an opportunity for us to stand up," Phil Cobucci, the president elect of Nashville Pride, said. "This is just a reminder that it can happen anywhere anytime."

Police are also working with local owners and operators of LGBT establishments to "ensure that lines of communication are open," and so owners and operators are quick to contact police with any concerns. Any establishments which have not been contacted are urged to reach out to the commander of their precinct.

Nashville Mayor Megan Barry said the more visible presence will make people feel safe, but fear won't dictate daily life.

"There's so much that goes on behind the scenes when we're thinking about security in Nashville, what you'll see going forward is a more visible presence so people can feel safe, but we can't let fear dictate how we go about our lives."

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