STONE MOUNTAIN, Ga. (CBS46) - Protesters have gathered in the City of Stone Mountain after Stone Mountain Park was closed to the public Saturday, August 15, due safety concerns ahead of planned protests.
There is a heavy police presence at Ridge Avenue and West Mountain Street which is about a block from Main Street. There are several police agencies assisting the local police department.
"Security concerns have been identified and are being addressed by state and local law enforcement authorities," said the Stone Mountain Park Department of Public Safety Friday evening.
A message to the public was also shared by the city. It reads in part:
The City of Stone Mountain is anticipating and preparing for at least two (2) opposing groups of protestors whose intentions are to demonstrate at Stone Mountain Park on August 15, 2020. Stone Mountain Park has made the decision to close the Park on this day. While the city has little information on what to expect during this time, out of the abundance of caution we are asking the General Public to avoid the City of Stone Mountain, specifically the downtown area, on Saturday, August 15th, 2020 beginning at 4:00am until 12:00 midnight.
The park last saw protest lead by the armed Black militia on the the 4th of July. For years the park has attracted controversy for its Confederate monument, the largest in the country, honoring Gen. Robert E. Lee, General Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson and President of the Confederacy, Jefferson Davis.
The number of people expected to attend the rally remains unknown.
The park is expected to resume normal operations on Sunday.