ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ) — As President Joe Biden was sworn in as the next commander-in-chief, security was heightened not only in Washington, D.C., but also at state houses across the country.
In Annapolis Wednesday, law enforcement officers near the Maryland State House stood out as few people ventured out in the area.READ MORE: Bobbleheads Memorialize Baltimore Sports Superfan Mo Gaba, Raise Money For Charity
Since the deadly riots at the U.S. Capitol earlier this month, officials expressed concerns that state capitols could become targets for violent extremists angry about the election’s outcome.
Annapolis Police Chief Edward Jackson told WJZ local officers are on patrol with support from state police and even help from federal law enforcement.
“We want them to know when they see extra patrols that it’s for their own security, and I wanted it done in a way that it didn’t occupy the city,” he said.READ MORE: Baltimore Mayor, Maryland Governor Clash After Hogan Says City Getting More Vaccines Than ‘Entitled To’ In Response To WJZ Question
The stepped up security is intentional and not unique to Annapolis.
“We welcome you to Annapolis, but we don’t welcome you if you come here to do harm,” Jackson said.
Visitors and residents of Annapolis noticed the increased police presence, saying it’s a shame it has come to this.
“I think the security is definitely a necessary precaution, but I don’t see what happened in D.C. happening here just because this is a statehouse instead of it being anything on the federal level,” Annapolis resident Brandon Kirk said.
“We saw that they had the state troopers stationed in the roundabout-type areas and then we’ve seen a lot of police cars driving through,” Kent Island resident Jessica Arnold said.MORE NEWS: West Baltimore Native, Descendent Of Slaves On Last US-Bound Ship From Africa, Shares Family's Legacy
Jackson said there is no direct threat to the city, but there will be a heightened police presence even after inauguration day.