Bikers planning to protect supporters at Donald Trump rally in Phoenix
PHOENIX — A group of bikers said it plans to protect supporters from possible violence at a Donald Trump rally scheduled to be held in Phoenix on Saturday.
“We’re going to stand between them and any protesters that come onto the property and hopefully protect them from any bodily harm, should it get to that point,” Cindy Perrin with Lions Guard Arizona said.
The rally is expected to begin Saturday about 4 p.m. at the Veterans Memorial Coliseum on the Arizona State Fairgrounds near 19th Avenue and McDowell Road.
The protest will be held at nearby Encanto Park from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Perrin said the biker group, made up mostly of retired police officers, such as herself, and veterans, will be wearing American flag bandanas so they are easy to identify.
“If they have any problems, they’ll be able to locate us and ask us for help,” she said.
Perrin said her group is not expecting things to take a violent turn outside of Trump’s rally, unlike several events the presumptive Republican presidential nominee hosted in California.
“We’re not expecting it to get to that point in Arizona,” she said.
The bikers will not be the only group attempting to keep things calm on Saturday. Arizona Department of Public Safety Capt. Damon Cecil said his organization has reached out to groups both for and against Trump.
“Most of those groups — not all, but most of those groups — we have talked to their leadership and got assurances their protests were going to be peaceful,” he said.
Protest organizers are also hoping things remain civil.
“My message to the folks that want to protest is: You know what? Why don’t you pick up a clipboard, let’s get some voter registrations and get some more families registered to vote who will vote against Trump come November,” Tony Navarette with Promise Arizona said.
DREAM Act advocate Carmen Cornejo said protesters who act violently are doing nothing more than falling into line with Trump’s rhetoric.
“I invite all young people to not react with violence to the provocations and the incendiary comments of Mr. Trump,” she said.
KTAR’s Jeremy Foster and Ashley Flood contributed to this report.