Updated: Jan 5
Hundreds of National Guardsmen will support Washington, D.C. police during protests planned by President Donald J. Trump.
Hundreds of National Guardsmen are reported to be in Washington, D.C. this week to assist local police officers with crowd management and traffic control during the President's planned protests.
CBS News says the District of Columbia National Guard will activate 340 troops.
During a Monday press conference, Metropolitan Police Chief Robert Contee III told reporters, "We have received confirmation that the D.C. National Guard will be assisting the Metropolitan Police Department, beginning tomorrow through the life cycle of this event."
The support will allow officers “to focus on anyone who’s intent on instigating, agitating, or participating in violence in our city,” the Police Chief added.
Washington Mayor Muriel Bowser, a Democrat, said she had requested National Guard personnel in a Dec. 31 letter to District of Columbia National Guard Commanding General William Walker.
Mayor Bowser said that guardsmen would not be armed nor would they engage in domestic surveillance, searches, or seizures of American citizens.
Protest organizers estimate over a million pro-Trump supporters will be in attendance protesting the Electoral College certifications of battleground states' votes and supporting GOP members of Congress who plan to object during the joint session.
Bowser noted that two pro-Trump protests late last year escalated into violence, even though most violence appeared to be committed by left-wing radicals. Pro-Trump ralliers, including Proud Boys members, were seen fighting as well.
Proud Boys chairman, Enrique Tarrio, recently stated on Parler that group members would be in D.C. on Jan. 6 but would not be wearing their usual black and yellow attire. “We will be incognito and we will spread across downtown DC in smaller teams,” he said.
The Harrington Hotel, a Proud Boy members' favorite meeting spot, announced in December that it would be closing Jan. 4–Jan. 6.
A statement was released by the U.S. Capitol Police that said it “has comprehensive security plans in place and we continuously monitor and assess new and emerging threats, with the overall goal of keeping those within the Capitol Complex safe and secure.”