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Most people at demonstration support Douglas Sheriff

Sheriff Dan Coverley addresses the media on Saturday morning in Minden.
Kurt Hildebrand

Hundreds of people gathered in Minden to counter an expected Black Lives Matter protest on Saturday.

Sheriff Dan Coverley, who wrote a letter in response to a diversity statement proposed by the librarian that included the hashtag #Black Lives Matter, said he felt his message was misconstrued.

“I meant that if you don’t feel you can trust law enforcement, then don’t feel like you need to ask us for help,” Coverley said. “I never threatened anything.”

He pointed out that most of the national media attention has been over the end of the letter, which he drafted as a response to the notion of defunding the police.

 “I am shocked at the national media attention,” he said. “But I’m overwhelmed at the support I’ve received personally, for my family and for the sheriff’s office.” 

A Douglas County native and son of popular Douglas High Football Coach Bill Coverley, spectators sported “I stand with Dan,” signs and applauded as Coverley spoke.

He said that the Sheriff’s Office supports the library and the services they provide.

“We will continue to protect and serve them and all citizens and visitors to Douglas County,” he said. “We respect everyone’s right to assemble and exercise their first amendment (rights). However will not tolerate destruction of property or personal injury the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office is committed to fair policing and treating everyone in an impartial equitable objective manner with respect and in accordance with the law.”

Most of the demonstrators around the Douglas County Judicial & Law Enforcement Center were clearly supporting the sheriff, a score of Black Lives Matter protesters were on the sidewalk south of Highway 395 near Buckeye Road.

Several of the protesters supporting the sheriff were armed at one level or another but as of Saturday morning, there were no incidents reported.

The crowd awaits Douglas County Sheriff Dan Coverley’s statement on Saturday in Minden.
Kurt Hildebrand