LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – While there are no credible security threats to Sunday’s Super Bowl, there will be a beefed-up law enforcement presence at the game, and officials on Tuesday asked fans to keep an eye out for any suspicious activity.
Hundreds of police officers both seen and unseen will be on hand at SoFi Stadium for the NFL’s championship game, once again designated a Level 1 Special Event Assessment Rating by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).
“We do not have any known specific, credible threats towards the event,” the NFL’s Chief Security Officer Cathy Lanier told a news conference.
“However you will as ever see an increase in security presence and there will be a multitude of different agencies … assisting us from the federal, state and local government and the region.”
Officials said patrons should plan how they will get to and from the stadium; leave their drones at home; and report any suspicious activity, including threats they see online.
“We’re very mindful of those that would wish to disrupt this and we’re very attentive to ensuring such an occasion does not occur,” said Los Angeles Police Chief Michel Moore.
DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said he has been watching protests in Canada by truckers who oppose mandatory vaccinations for COVID-19, and said that if a similar protest occurs on gameday, his department will be ready.
“We don’t want to speculate about what type of appearance might occur in this area either before, during or after the Super Bowl,” he said in response to a question on the topic.
“But we have planned and we are prepared to address it, whatever materializes. But those protests have been civil in nature.”
Drivers demanding an end to federal COVID-19 vaccine mandates for cross-border traffic have blocked crossings from the United States to Canada in protest.
Mayorkas said that while there is a variety of potential threats running from human trafficking and counterfeit good to physical attacks, but said the federal, state and local teams were prepared.
“With the range of expertise that we bring to bear, we’ve planned and prepared for all different types of attacks that could occur.”
(Reporting by Rory Carroll in Los Angeles; Editing by David Gregorio)