The National Guard agreed to send unarmed members to assist the US Park Police. USA Protect Washington’s national monuments, CNN reported Wednesday.
The request comes as President TrumpDonald John Trump Bowman has a double-digit lead over Engel in New York. McGrath leads Booker in Kentucky with results expected next week New York Republican Chris Jacobs wins special election to replace Chris Collins MORE and other administration officials have criticized protesters who responded to the police murder of George Floyd and efforts to remove or deface various statues.
“The District of Columbia National Guard is responding to a request for support from law enforcement officials and has sent unarmed personnel, along with others on standby,” National Guard spokesman Major Robert Perino said in a statement to CNN. “Activated guards are expected to provide security for local monuments and critical infrastructure.”
Guard members are expected to remain in the area until July 4 and can reach 400, according to CNN.
Trump promised on Tuesday to crack down on anyone caught destroying a monument.
“I have authorized the Federal Government to arrest anyone who destroys or destroys any such monument, statue, or other federal property in the United States with up to 10 years in prison under the Veteran Monument Preservation Act,” he tweeted.
Floyd’s death has sparked massive protests in the US. USA And solidarity marches around the world, but activity in Lafayette Square directly in front of the White House has repeatedly sparked Trump’s outrage. On June 1, the police forcibly dispersed a largely peaceful protest in the park with chemical irritants.
His tweets Tuesday came after protesters attempted to tear down the statue of President Jackson in the park.
Home Secretary David Bernhardt, who oversees the Park Police, had previously requested assistance from the National Guard, arguing that his officers had experienced violence.
“I just left Lafayette Square, where another so-called” peaceful protest “led to destruction tonight,” Bernhardt tweeted just before 11 p.m. Monday. “Let me be clear: We will not bow to anarchists. Law and order will prevail, and justice will be done.”
Interior’s involvement in the June 1 incident has already prompted an investigation by its Office of the Inspector General, although competing law enforcement agencies involved in the scene have already complicated its review.
“After making an initial determination of which agency had command and control of law enforcement operations, we will conduct a review of the Park Police’s actions accordingly,” a spokesman for the inspector general said Monday.
The investigation was spurred by at least three requests from Congress for an investigation.