The stars are aligning in Montreal. With the Canadiens taking to the rink at the Bell Centre to possibly oust the Las Vegas Knights for a spot in the Stanley Cup final — and on Saint-Jean-Baptiste no less — Montrealers might finally be in for a long-deserved celebration.
And the SPVM says it will be ready.
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What will Montreal police be watching for?
A police spokesperson told Narcity Québec that Montrealers can expect a greater police presence.
In fact, the SPVM's "operational planning" section has been preparing for June 24 for a while, Narcity learned.
"It's been several days that this section is working very hard to organize the police deployment not only for Saint-Jean-Baptiste but also for the decisive game of the Canadiens," media relations officer Manuel Couture said.
They'll pay particular attention to crowd developments that could produce excessive or illegal behaviour, like fights, vandalism or fireworks, according to Narcity.
"People have the right to celebrate and be happy. But if you have a joyful demonstration by 10,000 people downtown [...] the problem is that there could be fifty or a hundred people who take advantage of the crowd effect to break down businesses, attack police officers, fight each other," Couture said.
What kind of officers will be present?
Narcity reports that the police presence will include officers on bikes and horses, in addition to cars. Couture suggested the SPVM could deploy officers equipped with more gear, as well.
"We are constantly adapting. There's a difference between jumping up and down, screaming and breaking things. Yes, there may be a police deployment with helmets, batons and shields."