Fort Bend County ramps up security ahead of Inauguration Day

FORT BEND COUNTY, Texas (KTRK) -- With preparations underway for the inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris, Fort Bend County says it wants to be prepared for anything that may arise.

On Monday, Fort Bend County Sheriff Eric Fagan held a press conference, along with other local law enforcement representatives, and discussed the safety measures they will be taking on Jan. 20.

"I want to make this very clear, any criminal activity, destruction of property, violence, or threat of violence that prevent others from peacefully expressing their first amendment right will not be tolerated," Fagan said,

Watch Fort Bend County Sheriff Eric Fagan's briefing in the video above.

While no threats have been identified, Fort Bend County says it will continue to monitor for potential security concerns to ensure the safety of the community, protesters, and officers.

As a way to prepare, Fagan says they have ramped up all security and canceled all days off to make sure they have enough staff.

"It's more better to be prepared for something to happen, to not be prepared if something were to happen," Fagan said. "People have the first amendment right to protest, we're not here to stop that. We're here to make sure that they can protest safely and respectfully."

Fort Bend County Judge KP George added that the county will be running on normal operation hours on Jan. 20 and has no plan to close anything.

"We are taking ample precautions," George said.

Preparing ahead of the inauguration comes a few weeks after angry supporters of President Donald Trump stormed the U.S. Capitol in a chaotic protest aimed at thwarting a peaceful transfer of power.

"What this ordeal proved is that law enforcement was not prepared for the event, such as this one. Police planned only for a free speech demonstration. Do not take this as criticism of those who were in charge," Fagan said. "One of my primary goals as sheriff of Fort Bend County is to strengthen relationships of the sheriff's office with our law enforcement counterpart. To that end, we stand united."

SEE ALSO: FBI Houston tracking down threats ahead of Inauguration Day

In the city of Houston, FBI Houston division said it will focus on gathering and coordinating with local partners on potential threats between now and Jan. 20.

The local action was announced just days after an internal FBI bulletin, which was obtained by ABC News last week, stated that the agency had received information about a group that has called for "storming" state, local and federal government courthouses and administrative buildings in the event President Donald Trump is removed from office prior to Inauguration Day.
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