Chief Wendell Franklin says TPD is ready to handle upcoming big weekend

TULSA, Okla. — Tulsa Police Chief Wendell Franklin said their goal as a department is simple for the upcoming centennial. They are here to protect the safety of the people in the city and the boundaries of the city for all events.

Chief Franklin says the community can expect to see a high visibility of police officers in the area, as well as officers who people can’t see or are undercover.

“We will use a number of different measures to ensure the safety of citizens,” Franklin said. “We are also going to use some operational techniques we’ve never used before in our city.”

Chief Franklin says from a national perspective, the federal government has deemed any kind of mass gathering right now as “high risk.”

He says they will operate under that same premise making sure the department has a number of assets available.

All Tulsa Police officers, which the department says is about 800, will be involved in the events.

He says they will protect the “peaceful assembly” of all citizens but will not allow bridges, overpasses, and streets to be blocked by groups that don’t have proper permits.

Chief Franklin is asking the people of Tulsa to report anything suspicious, especially in the area of downtown where the events are happening.

  • Unattended bags or boxes or any type of large vehicles like Uhauls, box trucks in any unordinary areas where masses of people will be.
  • Also asking businesses to report any type of bulk purchases such as fireworks, mortars, umbrellas, leaf blowers, lasers, gas masks, etc.
  • Businesses are asked to report any suspicious activity seen on surveillance cameras, that includes hotels which could be a gathering place for people.

You can call 911 to report or TPD non-emergency number 918-596-COPS.

Chief Franklin says a number of different local, state and federal departments and agencies will be helping in security.

Monday’s event at ONEOK: Tulsa Police will be providing a blanket of security outside the park. A number of off-duty officers from neighboring agencies will be securing the inside.

As far as President Biden’s planned visit on June 1st, Chief Franklin says it’s way too early to know specific security plans from the Secret Service.

He says the department is ready to help ensure the president makes it to Tulsa and to his destination and back to the airport safely.

“We are going to hopefully over-prepared,” Franklin said. “I want a bunch of policemen working and my hope is none of them have to take any action but we are prepared if need be.”