SAN FRANCISCO — Organizers of a conservative Patriot Prayer free speech rally planned in San Francisco for Saturday abruptly announced they were cancelling the  event on Friday afternoon, citing the potential for violence. 

"We have a lot of respect for the citizens in San Francisco and at the end of the day we wanted people to be safe, Joey Gibson, one of the event organizers, said in a Facebook Live presentation with other organizers.

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"It just seems like a huge setup so we decided that we were going to take the opportunity to not fall into that trap," he said.

Instead, organizers said they would hold a press conference at 2:00 pm local time in Alamo Square Park, the well-known San Francisco park that fronts on to the iconic painted lady Victorian houses.