Police bikes worth their weight in gold during Convention

Posted at 6:19 PM, Jul 20, 2016

The Cleveland Police Bike Unit has played a key role this week in dispersing unruly crowds downtown during the Republican National Convention. 

"These bikes, one thing about them, is they are force multipliers. One bike is equal to three officers, so don't need as many foot troops," said Lt. Jason DeFranco. 

There are roughly 300 police officers on bikes, about half are Cleveland police officers. The others are from outside agencies brought in to help Cleveland during the Convention. 

"Bicycles give you the opportunity to control where the crowd goes and to be able to move a crowd," said Captain Tom Mandzak. 

With the bikes, officers can get through crowds quicker and set up faster at strategic locations. 

During the security planning for the RNC, the Cleveland Police Department reached out to other cities that have dealt with political conventions.

"We talked to Charlotte, Tampa and that was one of the main suggestions. Make sure you have enough bike guys, they are worth their weight in gold," said Cleveland Police Chief Calvin Williams.