NEVADA CITY (CBS13) — June is Pride Month and cities across our area are celebrating the LGBTQIA+ community, but one pride event was canceled after a Nevada City councilmember said she couldn’t guarantee the safety of visitors.
“It’s a shame that things that are about celebrating diversity have to be canceled out of fear of intolerant people,” said Nevada City local Danny McCannon.READ MORE: Survivors Of Two Pandemics Credit Pets With Helping Them Survive
Councilmember Daniela Fernandez organized a pride dance party on the newly constructed commercial street, then called it off just days after a celebration hundreds of miles away was threatened with violence.
Thirty-one men were arrested near a pride event in Idaho after piling into the back of a U-Haul truck with shields, shin guards and a smoke grenade. Local law enforcement believed them to be members of the White nationalist group Patriot Front.
“These events take place and then another venue is worried about the same situation,” said Former FBI agent Rick Smith.
We asked Smith if the event in small-town Idaho could repeat in Nevada City.
“Copycats aren’t as common as you’d think, but if you don’t take the precautions, you’re liable for not doing enough to safeguard the event and the people,” he said.
Councilmember Fernandez took to social media, writing, in part: “We have no way to ensure safety for an outdoor public event on the street with no clearly defined entry or exit points.”READ MORE: California's Capitol Lit-Up Pink for Second Night, Women Talk End of Roe v. Wade
She cited a heightened state of vulnerability after she says the city’s pride flags were vandalized.
“They’re going to air on the side of caution,” Smith said.
So, how does the FBI ensure safety nationwide after a singular incident? Smith says communication.
“The FBI has 56 offices so they’re all interconnected, so that’s the reason the FBI is effective,” he said.
Smith said local FBI offices will likely coordinate with police and monitor social media to identify potential local members of the same group.
The councilmember’s social media post says they will work to plan events in 2023 and hope to be able to hire private security.MORE NEWS: Vehicle Crashes Into Heritage Oaks Hospital In Sacramento
Nevada City police say they were not included in any plans for the event including its cancelation.