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.
Claiming he is backed by a “silent majority,” President Donald Trump turned the nation’s capital into a model for the overwhelming force he believes critical to stop sometimes-violent protests that have spread across the country in a time of racial unrest.
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.