As festivities ramp up for July 4, so does need for vigilance

- Cleveland - not New York, Boston or a city in California, was the target or a foiled Fourth of July attack recently.

What could have happened in Cleveland can be planned anywhere which is why local police are being more vigilante and asking the public for help and to report suspicious behavior.

One of the largest gatherings in the metro Detroit area on the 4th of July will happen in Clawson for the annual holiday parade. Thousands will pack the streets at the celebration and police are doing everything they can to keep people safe.

"It is a mistake to think that smaller problems can't happen even in a smaller community," said Clawson Police Chief Harry Anderson. "Like Clawson - I've heard that before 'Clawson how can that happen?' You have to be vigilante and you have to think that it can happen even in a smaller community."

And because it can happen anywhere, police want to remind residents to be on the lookout.

"Our Fourth of July celebration is a wonderful time with people coming out to see the parade," Anderson said. "We do a lot of things to help prepare the area and look for suspicious activity and we ask that our residents that are at our parade or fireworks to just be vigilante and watch for things that appear to be suspicious behavior."

Now with parades being considered "soft" targets essentially, law enforcement agencies are working together to make sure events like this are hardened.

"We are partners in a consortium called Oak Tech which is all of Oakland County, as well as the FBI and local agents," Anderson said. "We are constantly communicating different threats and they are always there to assist us. It is just a phone call away."
 

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