ST. PAUL — With two events planned for the state Capitol complex over the weekend, Public Safety Commissioner John Harrington on Friday, Jan. 15, said the state would maintain a strong law enforcement presence at the complex and elsewhere in the event that rallies or other gatherings break the peace.
His department, as well as the Department of Homeland Security, FBI, State Patrol, Bureau of Criminal Apprehension and others, have prepared for possible unrest through the end of the month tied to false claims that the presidential election was invalid.
“We are turning over every rock and looking under every bush to see if there is anything else out there, but I can tell you that the FBI is not finding any credible local threats, the Department of Homeland Security has said to us there is no local credible threats and the state BCA has not found any credible local threats,” Harrington said.
Harrington said that despite earlier reports about the state Capitol becoming a target of potential far-right violence, state and federal officials had not found credible threats in recent days.
Two events are slated this weekend at the state Capitol complex in St. Paul: a “Freedom Fest” rally today, Jan. 16, and a church service on Sunday, Jan. 17.
The organizer for both events helped coordinate a Jan. 6 “Storm the Capitol” rally in St. Paul. Law enforcement agencies are investigating those who spoke at the event following reports that attendees called for “casualties” and a civil war following the result of the presidential election.
State officials have urged visitors to avoid the Capitol complex over the weekend and said traffic would be diverted in the area. And the U.S. District Court on Friday said federal courts around the state would close through next week due to potential threats.
This story will be updated. Stay with us for more throughout the day.