Denver to hunt protesters with maps, bicycles, football helmets
John Byrne
Published: Thursday August 21, 2008

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Almost everyone can be a potential violent protester at the Democratic National Convention, according to a new bulletin issued by the Denver Police Department and leaked to the ACLU.

The bulletin lists myriad items police should watch out for, including "caches of supplies that could be used by violent demonstrators." The publication intended for commissioned police officers was provided to RAW STORY Thursday.

On the list? Plastic shields, football helmets, gas masks, baseball catch protectors, cases of nails, hand held radios, maps, bicycles, and protest sign handles ("perfect for swinging at first responders"). The police say they're also worried about people with large numbers of city maps or "camping information."

"Football, baseball, motorcycle and bicycle helmets are all used by violent protesters," the bulletin warns. "Bicycles are used to blockade sidewalks, streets and can be used to slow down responding emergency vehicles."

Camping information is a threat, too, such as "information concerning the camping, boarding or housing of potential violent protesters that have rented campaign spaces, rented farms or land for the time period around the DNC."

Maps are worrisome because they're "frequently used by violent protester [sic] to plan direct actions against conventioneers."

"Baseball/softball catcher protectors" are also of concern, police warn.

ACLU spokesmen will hold a press conference Thursday afternoon. The nonprofit criticized the document in a press release, saying many of the items are "innocuous."

"Although the bricks were acquired for masonry repairs, Denver police accused the activist of 'stockpiling' the bricks for the DNC," the press release reads. The activist will speak at Thursday's press conference, but ACLU officials did not release a name Wednesday.

The document follows.