Law enforcement across Middle Tennessee sets plans for possibility of Election Day unrest

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — While sitting in her Old Hickory home, Charlotte Miller reflected on the moment when she voted in this year’s general election.

“When I voted, early voted, I got emotional and I broke down,” Miller explained. “And I was really feeling verklempt. Part of that is because it’s been a four-year process of all those things going on and on and on.”

Miller is a Nashville native who owns her own catering company. She describes experiencing a feeling of heaviness. But, even more so, a feeling of responsibility.

“Because when you vote — I voted in all the elections — I thought that was enough,” Miller said. “And, I realized it wasn’t. I did not actively pursue policies. I did not encourage other people. I did not get involved in my community.”

As thousands prepare to vote on Election Day across Tennessee, various law enforcement agencies have plans of how to respond in the instance of civil unrest.

Metro Nashville Police released a statement Monday afternoon. It read in part: “While the MNPD expects tomorrow’s election to be free of disruptions, each of the eight precincts has established a team of officers to respond to calls for service at any Nashville polling location.”

Sumner County, Wilson County, Rutherford County, Williamson County Sheriff’s Offices, and Murfreesboro Police also have plans which include extending shifts, adding patrols, and monitoring polls.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation also released a statement Monday:

“In keeping with our standard election day protocol, FBI Headquarters will stand up a National Election Command Post to provide a centralized location for assessing election-related threats. The command post will track status reports and significant complaints from FBI field offices; monitor for indicators of a coordinated nationwide effort to disrupt the election process; and provide guidance to FBI field offices. In addition, the command post will coordinate FBI response to any election-related incident. FBI field offices are standing up election command posts to coordinate with their local and state partners, as well as with the FBI Headquarters National Election Command Post. This enables each FBI field office to streamline communication and response and ensure the safety and security of the elections and public.”

Public Affairs Officer Elizabeth Clement Webb, FBI Memphis Field Office

Miller says she doesn’t believe those plans are necessary and is instead hoping for civility and peace.

“I think it’s ridiculous. Don’t feed into it. I think it’s just going to make it worse,” said Miller. “I deep down believe that people are as good as I think they are.”

No agencies have reported any substantiated threats to the polls. Authorities say law enforcement plans are only in place as a means of precaution.

Stay with News 2 for continuing coverage of community unrest across Middle Tennessee.

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