CHICAGO (CBS) — In the wake of the Orlando nightclub massacre, Chicago police were stepping up patrols ahead of Pride Festival this weekend.
Chicago Pride Fest kicks off Saturday in Lakeview, and will be followed by Pride Parade the following weekend.READ MORE: Surveilence Video Shows Moments Leading To The Arrest Of Allan M. Brown, Suspect In Kenosha Police Shooting
“We will not be intimidated by those who use fear and violence to attack our most fundamental values of inclusiveness and community. Two weeks from today I look forward to joining many others in Chicago as we come together as a city to celebrate those values, and the LGBT community, at our Pride Parade,” Mayor Rahm Emanuel said in a written statement Sunday.
After a gunman killed at least 49 people at a crowded gay nightclub in Orlando early Sunday, Pride Fest and the Pride Parade in Chicago will be marked by a massive security presence.
The Chicago Police Department wasn’t releasing any numbers, but First Deputy Supt. John Escalante has deployed more resources in Town Hall District, which includes Lakeview, Boystown, and Lincoln Park.READ MORE: 5 Wounded In Mass Shooting In Chatham
Authorities said there is no evidence of a threat against the LGBT community in Chicago, but they are stepping up police presence out of an abundance of caution.
“I just thought it was important for me to come out tonight just to show you all that, CPD, we stand for everybody in the city of Chicago. This is just another example of how gun violence affects everybody in the country at some point in time. So we’re here to support not only Orlando, but to support the community here, and to let you all know that we’ll always be here for you,” Chicago Police Supt. Eddie Johnson said at a vigil for the Orlando victims on Sunday.MORE NEWS: Bulls Win Home Opener Against The Pelicans
Department leaders also have reached out to Orlando police to offer any assistance needed in response to the worst mass shooting in U.S. history.