MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The Minnesota Department of Public Safety (DPS) says people visiting the State Capitol over the next several days will notice the presence of law enforcement officers, National Guard soldiers and other extra security measures.
On Thursday, the DPS announced that it will be working with the Minnesota State Patrol to help protect the Capitol due to possible protest activity expected in the days leading up to the presidential inauguration.READ MORE: Johnson & Johnson Says Research Shows Booster Increases COVID-19 Protection
“Visitors will notice some, but not all, security measures that are intended to keep people safe and protect property on the Capitol Complex,” the DPS said.
Security measures include State Patrol troopers, DNR conservation officers and National Guard soldiers being visible and available to respond to threats that may arise. Also, traffic restrictions will be in place around the Capitol.
“We will continue to track and monitor reports of any individuals or groups that are not interested in a peaceful expression of their First Amendment rights so we can respond accordingly,” DPS Commissioner John Harrington said. “We have been working with our law enforcement partners to develop a coordinated and comprehensive plan to guard the Capitol and protect state employees, visitors and peaceful protestors from harm.”READ MORE: Twin Cities Housing Shortage Is Worst In Nation, Census Data Says
People who do not have a planned activity or business at the Capitol are being advised to consider visiting another time.
Harrington stressed that the Capitol is a safe place, and that the law enforcement preparations are being put in place to keep it that way. The fence that was installed during the summer remains in place around the capitol.
Anyone who sees a suspicious activity in the area is asked to call 911.
“It’s easy to overlook routine moments, but when something doesn’t seem quite right, it’s important to say something. Being alert and reporting suspicious activity to local law enforcement is a way to help protect the community,” the DPS said.MORE NEWS: 4 Minnesotans Named Finalists In Competition For BIPOC Entrepreneurs
The DPS, which includes the State Patrol and Bureau of Criminal Apprehension, is working in partnership with St. Paul police, the Ramsey County Sheriff’s Office, Minnesota DNR conservation officers and the Minnesota National Guard.
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