Some behind-the-scenes details of police operations during the Democratic National Convention are coming to light.
The $50 million federal grant Charlotte got for DNC security included a requirement that outside consultants monitor CMPD's efforts and prepare a report. Deputy Chief Harold Medlock says the report praises CMPD's coordination and communication with protest groups, including Chief Rodney Monroe's constant presence on the street during demonstrations.
Other interesting tidbits from Medlock's summary of the report to city council members last night include the fact that CMPD helicopters were in the air 20 hours a day during the DNC feeding live video back to a command center.
Unbeknownst to the public, CMPD also had a mobile hospital set up at its training facility in Southwest Charlotte to handle mass casualties.
"It's not necessarily something we felt like we needed to publicize," says Medlock. "You know, we planned for the worst and the best actually happened in this event."
The mobile hospital wasn't needed.
Medlock also told the city council CMPD served 70,000 meals during the DNC to some 6000 police officers on duty. The department used local catering companies to keep the economic benefit in Charlotte.
However, Medlock says most of the $50 million federal security grant went to buying specialized equipment from out-of-state companies. About $4 million worth of personal gear such as helmets went home with the visiting officers who helped during the DNC. The majority of the equipment is CMPD's to keep.
Medlock says a detailed accounting of how CMPD spent the federal money won't be ready until at least March.