The Southampton Town Police Department’s new counter-terrorism unit will be unveiled to patrol the Hampton Classic Horse Show, which attracts thousands of fancily clad spectators.
Police Chief Steven Skrynecki told Page Six that the unit is outfitted with bomb sniffing dogs, undercover officers, and bag checks. Some officers will be carrying assault rifles.
Skrynecki implored guests to be understanding and to be patient if the added security creates delays entering the venue. He said they should be “prepared to experience possibly a bit of a delay entering the event so we can maintain a maximum level of security,” adding, “We have had increased security at all our events this year, especially in light of the recent events in the world. Although there are no known threats,” the measures are “out of an abundance of caution.”
“This is not in response to anything specific — it stems from Southampton’s newly established anti-terrorism task force . . . There will be an increased number of police on the grounds, both uniformed and plainclothed,” and attendees “are subject to inspection with possible additional checkpoints over previous years. Surveillance cameras will also be in use. We hope that everyone attending . . . will find comfort in the knowledge that these new security measures are being taken,” said a rep from the event.
Page Six reported previously that the new unit had been patrolling celebrity-filled Hamptons parties throughout the summer. An officer was overheard explaining that police chiefs believe the events could be “soft targets” and that potential attackers could see a “big media opportunity” with all the prominent people present.
Georgina Bloomberg and Olympic gold medalist Peter Wylde are among the competing riders at the upcoming horse show.
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