Alexandria Police are reporting no known threats to the city in the run up to the inauguration of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris on Wednesday, Jan. 20, and the city is not planning to impose 6 p.m. curfew that night.
Mayor Justin Wilson told ALXnow that he sees no reason that a curfew will be necessary, as the Alexandria Police Department has been working closely with federal and regional law enforcement partners.
“At this point, we see no reason that will be necessary,” Wilson said. “Our police have been working closely with federal and regional partners for months to prepare for this period and I am confident they will keep our community safe.”
The city will activate its Emergency Operations Center on Jan. 20, and residents are asked to virtually observe the swearing-in of President-elect Joe Biden.
The governor imposed a 6 p.m. curfew on Alexandria and Arlington on Jan. 6 after the siege at the U.S. Capitol. The District will remain in a state of emergency until the day after Biden and Harris are inaugurated.
On Tuesday night, Police Chief Michael Brown briefed City Council on preparations in the run up to the inauguration, and said that the department’s civil demonstration unit is ready to be deployed.
Also this week, Alexandria Vice Mayor Elizabeth Bennett-Parker asked Alexandria hotels to cancel reservations for any members of the Proud Boys, an aggressive group that supports outgoing President Donald Trump.
The City’s EOC will be activated to monitor for any issues and coordinate response activities as needed. @AlexandriaVAPD is evaluating intelligence information and preparing necessary staffing for a variety of potential security scenarios. https://t.co/QvIbii40U8
— Justin Wilson (@justindotnet) January 15, 2021
See the full release from the city below the jump.
The City of Alexandria is preparing for activities surrounding the nation’s 59th presidential inauguration on Wednesday, January 20. In light of the COVID-19 pandemic and concerns stemming from the recent violence at the U.S. Capitol, the City joins state officials and regional leaders in urging the public to observe safely at home and not visit Washington, D.C. over the next week.
“The past year has been unlike any other in many ways,” said Mayor Justin Wilson. “What hasn’t changed is that every four years, America recognizes the democratic transition of power from one presidential term to the next. Because we are still in an active public health emergency and a federal state of emergency, this observance will take place individually rather than in crowds. Our public safety teams are working diligently to protect us, but they need our help to make good choices. This year, more than ever, the most patriotic thing we can do is keep each other safe.”
The City’s Emergency Operations Center will be activated to monitor for any issues and coordinate response activities as needed. The Alexandria Police Department is evaluating intelligence information and preparing necessary staffing for a variety of potential security scenarios. There are currently no known threats specific to Alexandria. Alexandria’s public safety departments are collaborating with federal, state and local partners in the region, including the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments, on preparations to provide assistance to each other under mutual aid agreements.
Anyone who observes suspicious activity should call or text 911 immediately. Suspicious activity may include unusual items or situations; civilians dressed in military-style uniforms or tactical gear, or driving military-style vehicles; large amounts or sizes of luggage; or discussions of planned violence. It is also not generally illegal to openly carry firearms in Virginia, although firearms are prohibited by law in City facilities, parks, and gatherings requiring special event permits. Firearms may also be prohibited by private property owners, including hotels and transportation providers.
Factors such as race, ethnicity, and religious affiliation should not trigger suspicion. Individuals should only be reported if they are engaging in suspicious behavior or situations. While certain symbols, stickers and patches may be affiliated with specific groups, it is not illegal to possess these items or display them.
The Alexandria Police Department and Visit Alexandria are working with hotels to provide information about preparations and how to report problems. Anyone with hotel or homesharing reservations should check to see if any changes have been made.
Transportation providers are implementing many changes to reduce risk. Metrorail will close 13 stations between January 15 and 21, including the Arlington Cemetery Station and others in downtown D.C. Trains will operate on a Saturday schedule and will bypass closed stations. Metrobus will detour 26 bus routes during the same period, which may create some delays. Metrobus schedules will be otherwise normal, except that buses will operate on a Saturday schedule on January 20. There will be no service on DASH’s AT2X route on January 20. Be sure to check for any other potential changes to DASH, VRE, Amtrak, or other transportation providers’ schedules.