Missouri National Guard heading to D.C. to help with protests

1 month 1 week 18 hours ago Thursday, June 04 2020 Jun 4, 2020 Thursday, June 04, 2020 4:41:00 PM CDT June 04, 2020 in News
By: Daniel Perreault, KOMU 8 Political Reporter

JEFFERSON CITY- 300 members of the Missouri National Guard were deployed to Washington, D.C. on Thursday to help local authorities deal with protests in the nation's capitol.

The move comes after U.S. Secretary of Defense Mark Esper asked states to send members of their national guard to D.C., according to the Washington Post.

Since the troops are being deployed in a mutual aid capacity, Missouri's governor said Missouri tax payers will not foot the bill. That will fall on either the DC National Guard or the federal government.

"It's no expense out of our general revenue for them to go to Washington," he said. 

Missouri National Guard adjutant general Levon Cumpton said the troops being deployed will primarily be responsible for protecting significant landmarks and infrastructure.

An additional 1,000 members of the guard have been deployed throughout the state to help local authorities deal with protests. Cumpton said they have been in the St. Louis and Kansas City areas, as well as in Columbia and Jefferson City.

"This civil unrest mission is one of the most challenging missions we do," Cumpton said. "Our priority is the safety and well being of our reserve citizens, because we have a vested interest in our communities."

Another 1,000 members of the guard have been deployed throughout the state to help carry out the response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Among other things, the guard is helping to run mobile community-based testing sites.

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