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By Daniel J. Chacon
Rocky Mountain News

DENVER - The Internet is giving Denver police a glimpse into the lengths that protesters will go to wreak havoc during the Democratic National Convention next month.
The disruptive and even dangerous tactics being advertised online make it necessary for the city to enact a new law banning people from carrying certain items, Police Chief Gerry Whitman told City Council members Wednesday while lobbying for the proposed ordinance.
On one Web site, Whitman said, a local protest group is urging "anarchists and anti-authoritarians" to engage in a broad range of tactics to disrupt fund-raising events and stop delegates from getting to the Pepsi Center to vote.
Their targets include hotels, street intersections and transportation systems, he said.
"All tactics are and would be encouraged," the chief said, reading material that was found online.
Council members passed the proposal out of committee, but Glenn Spagnuolo, an organizer with the Re-create 68 Alliance protest group, said the city is overreacting.
The ordinance would make it illegal to carry items such as chains, padlocks and noxious substances, such as "feces bombs," if the intent is to use them to obstruct streets, sidewalks, buildings or emergency equipment, or hinder crowd control measures.
"It's a way of demonizing what's actually occurring," Spagnuolo said.
"I'm in touch with pretty much almost every group that's coming here," he said. "I don't represent every group that's coming here, but nobody is planning anything remotely close to that."
Safety Manager Al LaCabe said the city is preparing for the worst. The law would enable police "to act rather than react after something has happened," he said.
"It is not to give the police some unbridled power to interfere with someone's rights," LaCabe said. "It (would be applied) in particular kinds of situations."
Whitman agreed. "This ordinance will give the officers the discretion to be proactive by seizing those tools and instruments that are obviously going to be used to disrupt the public gathering, inhibit free speech or endanger officer safety or the public," he said.

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