MINNEAPOLIS (KMSP) - Agencies from across Minnesota--and across the country--have joined Minneapolis Police ahead of the Super Bowl to help keep a watchful eye on the crowds pouring into the Twin Cities.
“The footprint here in Minneapolis has certainly expanded," Minneapolis Police Chief Medaria Arradondo said. "It’s more significant, it’s more robust."
The Department of Homeland Security designated the Super Bowl as a national special security event. Arradondo told Fox 9 that his department is the lead agency in the massive security effort surrounding Super Bowl LII, with the Minnesota National Guard also joining in to help out.
“They’re really helping us in terms of static security posts," Arradondo said. "We are using them for certain areas where they bring capabilities to help us in terms of terrorism prevention."
While the sight of soldiers in the crowd can be intimidating for some people, it has proved to be comforting for others.
“With little kids around, it’s kind of nice to see,” said Super Bowl LIVE visitor, Kent Garbens. “It seems pretty discreet and out of the way. They seem to be doing a professional job.”
Officers were trained to make sure people feel welcome to approach them.
“We really are letting them know about the Minneapolis way and making sure we’re treating all of our guests and visitors with respect and giving them voice in building trustworthy spaces,” Arradondo said.
The chief said the security effort also extends to the public. The adage “if you see something, say something” really applies. Officers are encouraging people to stay vigilant and to flag down an officer or call the police if they see anything suspicious.
In addition to calling 911, people who see something suspicious can call 1-800-CALL-FBI.