HomeHome Page FeaturedPolice supporters hold “Back the Blue” rally in Mayfair

Police supporters hold “Back the Blue” rally in Mayfair

A crowd gathered at Cottman and Frankford to show support for police officers in the aftermath of the North Philadelphia shooting that left six injured.

A crowd gathered Friday evening at the triangle at Cottman and Frankford avenues to show support for police officers in the wake of a North Philadelphia shooting earlier this month that injured six officers. JACK TOMCZUK / TIMES PHOTO

Supporters of the Philadelphia Police Department gathered Friday in Mayfair for a “Back the Blue” rally in the wake of a shooting that left six officers injured and amidst uncertainty over who will lead the department going forward.

On an unseasonably cool and cloudy evening, the crowd, which gathered at the triangle at Cottman and Frankford avenues, held signs urging drivers to honk in support of the police.

The event was well-attended by elected officials and municipal candidates hoping to win in November.

“This kind of hits home for me,” said Bill Heeney, a Republican candidate for City Council at-large. “I’m the son of a Philadelphia police lieutenant. My father died in 1998, and he was injured in the line of duty.”

“I, like you, will always back the blue,” Sixth District Councilman Bobby Henon said. “I have always supported our police department with budgets in City Hall and will continue to fully fund our police department over the levels that are needed.”

“Blue lives do matter, and when you really look at it, all lives matter,” Councilman At-Large Al Taubenberger said. “And who does that? The blue.”

Sixth District Councilman Bobby Henon speaks Friday during the “Back the Blue” rally at Cottman and Frankford avenues in Mayfair. JACK TOMCZUK / TIMES PHOTO

A few protesters showed up, including one man who identified himself as a member of antifa. There was at least one minor skirmish and some shouting between the protesters and police supporters. 

The rally was organized after six officers were shot Aug. 15 when police tried to serve a warrant on a house in North Philadelphia. Since then, Police Commissioner Richard Ross resigned amid a lawsuit involving alleged sexual harassment within the department.

“This isn’t about any kind of race or gender or agenda,” state Rep. Mike Driscoll said. “This is about when there’s a problem and we’re running away from danger and our first responders and the police department are running into danger.” 

Cars were urged to honk in support of Philadelphia police during the rally, which was held at Cottman and Frankford avenues. JACK TOMCZUK / TIMES PHOTO

Others in attendance included Councilman At-Large David Oh, GOP mayoral candidate Billy Ciancaglini, Sixth District Council candidate Pete Smith and Republican Council at-large candidate Matt Wolfe. ••

Jack Tomczuk can be reached at jtomczuk@newspapermediagroup.com.

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