Spokane Police use new tools to protect parade

Spokane Police use new tools to protect parade


Almost one-thousand people attended the Martin Luther King Junior Unity March in downtown Spokane Monday morning to show their support for the diversity and equality King fought for.

Spokane Police were also out in force, working overtime to keep parade attendees and participants safe. Security has always been a priority, but even more so following the attempted attack in 2011 when white supremacist Kevin Harpham planted a bomb along the parade route.

“We have additional measures down here today because we do want it to be safe given the history of this event here in downtown Spokane,” said Spokane Police Captain Judi Carl.

The first thing police did this morning was use their new explosives-sniffing dog Ryker to do a bomb sweep at the convention center. They sent the all-clear back to the command post above the parade route where police and fire officials were keeping tabs on everything.

The Sheriff’s helicopter, Air One, was also circling overhead checking roof tops and sending video back to the new wireless monitors that allow incident commanders on the ground a birds-eye view.

“Rather than the helicopter crew having to describe where it’s at and what’s occurring, now commanders can see in real time exactly what is occurring,” Sergeant Dave Ellis with the Sheriff’s Office explained. “They can see it for themselves, so it allows them to direct the resources better – whether it’s personnel, the SWAT team, whatever it may be.”

Meanwhile Kevin Harpham remains behind bars. He has served three years of a 32 year sentence.