LAPD holds downtown counterterrorism drill

Pedestrians watch as Los Angeles Police Department officers take part in a counterterrorism drill in downtown Los Angeles on Thursday June 6,2013. Thursday's late-morning demonstration began with an explosion, officers firing blank ammunition at pretend suspects, and law enforcement helicopters flying low among downtown office towers. (AP Photo/Nick Ut)
Pedestrians watch as Los Angeles Police Department officers take part in a counterterrorism drill in downtown Los Angeles on Thursday June 6,2013. Thursday's late-morning demonstration began with an explosion, officers firing blank ammunition at pretend suspects, and law enforcement helicopters flying low among downtown office towers. (AP Photo/Nick Ut)

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The Los Angeles Police Department has begun a realistic counterterrorism drill in the heart of downtown.

Thursday’s late-morning demonstration began with an explosion, officers firing blank ammunition at pretend suspects, and law enforcement helicopters flow low among downtown office towers.

The drill scenario involves a response to threats of a weapon of mass destruction.

Authorities say the drill is part of the National Homeland Security Association’s conference at the Bonaventure Hotel and is being conducted by the Police Department’s Counter Terrorism and Special Operations Bureau.

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