Marion PD: 2 separate groups planning July 3 protests, asking organizers to stay separate

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MARION, Va. (WJHL) – The Marion Police Department is asking different groups of demonstrators to agree to a plan that will keep them separated during a planned assembly downtown on July 3.

According to a post from MPD, the department has been trying to work and communicated with “first amendment activity organizers” to make sure everyone involved is safe and demonstrates legally and peacefully.

The post says police have been made aware of at least two different groups planning to gather in downtown Marion on Friday.

MPD has been working on a plan to keep the groups separate, but in recent days there has been “increased commentary attempting to incite dangerous interactions between these groups.”

MPD is asking the event organizers to agree to the plan of separation so everyone can exercise their first amendment rights freely and peacefully.

The post also says that the department had previously agreed upon a rally and march route with Black Lives Matter and LGBTQ protest organizers that started at 2 p.m. at the Marion Farmers Market and followed primary roadways.

Since then, MPD says that organizers have announced a new march route through residential and secondary roads that begins at a new time.

MPD is asking that the event organizers return to the agreed upon time and route.

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