Out-of-State Mounted Patrol Helps Savannah Police

Law Enforcement agencies have been working together to watch over protesters at Forsyth Park and other locations. One such group, the mounted patrol, are a major force behind crowd control.

"Most agencies have small mounted units, so when you have a major event you can draw from all your other agencies that you have a mutual aid agreement with and everybody can be on the same page, commands and everything," explained Mike Morrow of the Tampa, Florida, mounted patrol.

For mounted patrol officers, this is especially important. With Chatham County only having so many horse-and-rider teams, being able to pull together with other counties is essential when it comes to dealing with crowd control.

"The horses need to get used to where they're going to be working at and the environment they're working in takes a couple of days," said mounted patrolman Stu Zelle of Orange County, Florida. "So I'm glad that it's been quiet for the last few days so we can get the horses ready for any event that might take place."

While protesters did stir up concern today, mounted patrol officers say it's small protest venues like this one that make for good practice.

"So far it's been a good warm up in case there's trouble," said Zelle. "A good chance to get ourselves prepared and our horses acclimated to the environment and each other."

Law enforcement officers say they don't mind protests marching, just as long as the don't impede traffic, or cause any damage to the area around them.

Reported by: Nicole Teigen, nteigen@wtoc.com