NewsCovering Colorado


Pueblo Chamber of Commerce beefs up security for this year's Chile and Frijoles Festival

Posted at 4:55 PM, Sep 22, 2023

PUEBLO — The Greater Pueblo Chamber of Commerce says they have spent over $50,000 to keep people safe at this year's Chile and Frijoles Festival.

This includes hiring two security teams, having security guards at each entrance and wanding people down as they come in.

The Pueblo Police also say that they will have a big presence at the festival. There will be uniformed and non-uniformed officers present, as well as officers on bikes patrolling the area.

According to Sgt. Franklyn Ortega with the Pueblo Police Department, officers want to "make sure that people come and enjoy themselves and not have to worry about any kind of criminal activity or anything like that."

The Chamber of Commerce's decision to invest in safety measures for the festival comes just two years after a shooting occured at the 2021 Chile and Frijoles Festival.

The incident involved two men who had attended the festival on Saturday night. When police arrived on scene, they came across the victim who had been shot repeatedly. The man was transferred to a local hospital for life-threatening injuries.

A warrant was issued for the suspect, 18-year-old Victor Villalobos, for attempted first-degree murder.

On the following Wednesday night, Villalobos surrendered himself to the local authorities.

Since the shooting, the tradition of the festival has continued with heightened safety measures.

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