National Guard Soldiers Activated for Trump Rally in Tulsa

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Members of the Oklahoma Army National Guard load a truck with boxes of Personal Protective Equipment.
FILE PHOTO -- Members of the Oklahoma Army National Guard load a truck with boxes of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) in Claremore, Okla., April 20, 2020 (Oklahoma Air National Guard/Tech Sgt. Rebecca Imwalle)

TULSA, Okla. — As many as 250 Oklahoma Army National Guard soldiers are being activated to help provide security during President Donald Trump’s campaign rally Saturday in Tulsa, authorities said Wednesday.

Tulsa Police Chief Wendell Franklin said the guardsmen will be used as a “force multiplier” to help secure safety zones around the downtown BOK Center where the rally is to be held.

The guardsmen will be unarmed but will carry shields, batons and pepper spray in case they need to protect themselves, said Guard spokesman Lt. Col. Geoff Legler.

Franklin says officers from multiple local, state and federal law enforcement agencies also will help provide security and that several blocks downtown will be closed for Saturday's event.

A two-day Juneteenth celebration also is scheduled for Friday and Saturday in the Greenwood District near downtown, and several anti-Trump protests are planned for Saturday.

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