The Democratic National Convention, set to be held in September at the Time Warner Cable Arena in Charlotte, has been hit by logistical issues in recent weeks. (By Chuck Burton, AP via USA Today)
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) - Starting Saturday, someone walking through Charlotte's central business district could run afoul of the law by carrying water bottles, hair spray, socks or magic markers under sweeping security rules enacted ahead of the Democratic National Convention.
It would take a strict reading of the rules for someone to be arrested simply for possessing one of those items, but the possibility exists - which worries protesters and free speech advocates who fear authorities could violate people's constitutional rights.
The changes to city ordinances adopted earlier this year for "extraordinary events" prohibit a long list of actions and items, including carrying a backpack with the intent to conceal any of the banned items.
Charlotte City Attorney Robert Hagemann said police officers will enforce the ordinances fairly to protect public safety.