SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — Heightened security measures were added to the Golden 1 Center for Thursday’s game between the Sacramento Kings and the Indiana Pacers.
The move to increase patrols and add security gates and fences came two days after protesters blocked the entrances to the game forcing the doors to be shut and thousands of fans locked out.
Protesters calling for justice in the police shooting death of Stephon Clark blocked entrances at two home games before Thursday’s matchup with Indiana.
Only ticked fans were allowed past a first line of security at the street entrance to the Downtown Commons plaza.
“I’m glad they’re making arrangements so everybody can get in,” said Debi Stevens, a Kings fan.
Steel barricades crisscrossed the pathways that were lined with fences. People were funneled to teams of uniformed officers ready for anything.
“They look like robocops,” said one fan with a laugh.
A security sight never seen before at a Kings game also had visiting fans taken aback.
“It’s kind of different. I’m not used to this much security,” said Brandon Ringwald, a Pacers fan who flew in from Indiana.
Having bought their tickets months ago, Ringwald says they were going to make the best of their trip.
“You just kind of got to be on your toes and see what happens,” Said Ringwald.
One protester did make through initial security without a ticket. He said “say his name” to police and King’s staff about Stephon Clark. He was quickly escorted out without incident.
For the most part on the plaza, it was normal pregame pump up.
Some loyal Kings fans, upset about not getting in earlier this week, said they are least encouraged by the organization taking a stance on the Stephon Clark shooting.
“I’m proud of the Kings for what they’ve done to this point to help this movement,” said Bob Clouse, a lifelong Kings fan.
The Kings also announced a partnership with Build Black Coalition. An activism effort councilman Rick Jennings says he can support.
“I think it’s an important message that everybody needs to get on board with and we strategize towards it that we build black. And in doing so we increase everything in Sacramento,” said Jennings wearing a Build Black T-shirt.
No arrests were made. Police say no incidents were reported.
The Kings management says its possible fans could see similar security procedures on Saturday for the Kings next home game against the Golden State Warriors.