Do you have a guess as to who might be the most excited group of people for next week’s Republican National Convention in Tampa, Florida? The criminals! Anticipating a flood of arrests surrounding the political event, local police have released prisoners to clear room in their jail cells, reports ABC Action News.
Orient Road Jail, which holds 1,700 beds, has been completely emptied prior to the RNC. While some inmates have been transferred temporarily to other jails, others have been released on bond. Maybe they will use their newfound freedom to pay the RNC a visit.
Obviously, convicted criminals need to be let go to clear room for the real criminals – protesters who dare to hide behind the Constitution while claiming First Amendment rights. Given the “unprecedented” moves the police force is using, it appears they expect a large turnout from not only conservatives, but people expressing political dissent.
Colonel Jim Previtera, the man in charge of next week’s Orient Road Jail activities, excitedly showed a reporter the expected operations while giving a tour of the prison. “The inmates will be unloaded, they will be searched and walked through a metal detector which has been added for this event,” Previtera said. “We will take their fingerprints and photographs. We’ll also collect property. There are three scenarios: inmates will either get bonded out, go before a judge who will be stationed at Falkenberg Road Jail with a video feed into Orient Road Jail, or they’ll be released.”
Col. Previtera noted that Tampa has spent more than two years putting this plan in place. Gosh, with so much preparedness for the worst circumstances, you don’t suppose the police are going to feel obligated to use the facilities in force, do you?
“There will be arrests,” said Hillsborough County Sheriff David Gee. “The question is how many. We are prepared to handle any number of RNC-related arrests.” Col. Previtera, however, was more specific, boasting that Orient Road Jail can handle 1,000 arrests.
Orient Road Jail will also have medical personnel on staff to address any emergency situations that may arise. Not that the police would ever use undue force against peaceful protesters or anything.
Sheriff Gee also sent a message to those coming to protest: “To the agitators and anarchists who want only to bring a dark cloud to this event, let me be clear: criminal activity and civil disturbances will not be tolerated and enforcement actions will be swift.”
If only the police were directing their efforts toward the criminals inside of the convention rather than the protesters calling for justice outside…
Photo Credit: Jonathan Wagner