Who pays for security at Valley presidential campaign visits?

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Fresno police are preparing for the next visit by a presidential candidate. (KFSN)

Fresno police are preparing for the next visit by a presidential candidate. The Hillary Clinton campaign is still finalizing details of her visit to Fresno Saturday, which means Fresno police don't know exactly what to plan in the way of security.

But they're pretty sure whatever it is, there will be less tension than there was last Friday for Donald Trump's visit.

Inside the Fresno Trump rally, spotting one of the 35 Fresno police officers among the crowd of about 8,000 might have been difficult. Outside the Selland Arena, three times as many officers made their presence felt -- prepared for potential trouble -- like the punch we caught on camera.

"We did a lot of video, reviewed a lot of video," said Fresno police Capt. Andy Hall. "We knew it would be well attended by both pro-Trump people and anti-Trump people so we had planned accordingly."

That punch caught on camera led to charges of assaulting a police officer against Rigoberto Vera. Aaminah Norman-Taquee was arrested on similar charges. They both pleaded not guilty Thursday and Norman will be released from jail.

Police don't think it'll require nearly as many officers to keep calm at Hillary Clinton's event.

"We don't know if they'll have pro-Sanders protesters at this event, but we will plan for a small contingent of protesters," Capt. Hall said.

Sanders' visit required the same number of officers as trump's on the inside, but none on the outside. And a smaller police force protected Bill Clinton during his Fresno visit. But even then, planning was intense.

"We think it's simple and these guys spend hours going over details that just blew my mind," said Doug Kessler, who works for Hillary Clinton's campaign.

Kessler says Clinton's advance team is working hard to figure out exactly how Hillary will come in to Fresno, and how they'll keep her safe. But they know it can't always be perfect.

"We're prepared for a heckler or two," Kessler said. "We've taken it so far as to not even let people bring signs into our event to try to cut down any intention of any type of protest."

Local police and the CHP haven't figured out the full cost of providing security to any of the campaign visits yet. Fresno officers say when they do, they'll send the campaigns a bill, but they're not optimistic about getting taxpayers' money back.
Related Topics:
society2016 electionsecurityfresnohillary clintondonald trumpbernie sandersfresno police departmentFresno
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