Safety a concern at polling places

Posted at: 11/19/2013 5:40 PM
By: Erica Zucco, KOB Eyewitness News 4

With so many emotions surrounding Albuquerque’s election over a late-term abortion ban, safety at the polls was a concern – so the city put security plans into place.

One-hundred feet from many polling locations were passionate campaigners speaking up one more time before voters hit the polls.

“We have the electioneers, the fors and againsts,” city clerk Amy Bailey said.

During early voting, some campaigners were a little aggressive, so the city wanted to make sure no one went too far on Tuesday, especially with polarized voices standing side by side.

“Just with some of the experiences we had with early voting, I did let the security chief of the city and APD know where our voting sites are so in the case of an incident they know that there's a voting location there,” Bailey said.

APD says they took notice and took action. They gave warning to area commanders near poll sites and prepared plans “just in case.”

“We just have the officers doing roving patrol in the area to be on the lookout for any criminal activity or suspicious activity,” APD Officer Tasia Martinez said. “And then if something does occur, we will have those officers within close proximity to anything that happens.”

The goal was to give protestors the right to speak out, while giving ever voter a feeling of safety.

The city clerk said poll sites were pretty peaceful Tuesday. Graphic abortion protestors were back outside the Holocaust museum and did cause some conflict. The museum asked them to leave.