The Rome Police Department posted an open letter to the community on its Facebook page Wednesday, which followed a public rally showing support for Rome PD outside its headquarters on North James Street.

In the letter, signed by Chief Kevin Beach and Deputy Chief Kevin Simons, the department says it is sincerely appreciative and grateful for the support it has been shown from the city, especially in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic and ongoing civil unrest witnessed across the country.

''...Each and every day throughout the COVID-19 pandemic and the civil unrest that has taken place in locations across the country, the citizens in our community have shown us their support in the form of meals, baked goods, gifts, cards, letters and phone calls to numerous to mention reflecting encouragement, gratitude, and strength. Every member of the Rome Police Department is of the philosophy and understanding that it is not ''my'' police department, but ''your'' police department...

The letter continues, ''It is no accident that Rome remains one of the safest communities in the country...You continue to show your love to us, and for that, we are eternally grateful. You have always been there for us and we remain here for you...''

Rally to show support for Rome, NY Police. July 8, 2020 (credit Jim Zecca)
Rally to show support for Rome, NY Police. July 8, 2020 (credit Jim Zecca)

The rally held Wednesday afternoon was organized by Mohawk Valley/Central New York for Trump and Tenney, and Main Street Patriots. It was co-hosted by a pair of motorcycle clubs - The Blue Knights NY 19, and Legion Riders 1153 of Sylvan Beach, said for New York Assemblyman and retired police officer Dave Townsend.

''We want to show public and community support for the men and women of the Rome Police Department, that we're standing by them. [Police] are getting pummelled out there, every day across the country. They put their life on the line for us every day and we want to show them we support them,'' said Townsend.

The group will hold similar rallies for the Utica and Syracuse departments, he said.

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