Members of the Idaho National Guard are headed to Washington D.C. to help with civil unrest. There are no details on the number of people going and when they will leave Idaho.
Lt. Col. Chris Borders, PIO for the Idaho National Guard, said they are in the process of notifying personnel right now. This is a volunteer mission only, and it is expected that around 400 guardsmen will go. Personnel will travel via military aircraft.
"Whether responding to a crisis in Idaho or another state, the principles of the Idaho National Guard remain the same: to help local jurisdictions, city governments and state agencies ensure public safety," said Maj. Gen. Michael Garshak, adjutant general of Idaho and commander of the Idaho National Guard. "Regardless of where we are in the U.S., our role is to support civilian authorities and our personnel are trained to protect life, preserve property and ensure people's right to peacefully demonstrate."
The mission is expected to be around five days long and personnel will "serve in support of the United States Park Police and the Metropolitan Police Department," according to a press release from the Idaho National Guard.
Protests in the nation's Capitol have been violent at times. The protests are in response to the death in Minnesota of a black man, George Floyd, who died after a white police office pressed his knee to Floyd's neck for several minutes.
The District of Columbia National Guard requested help and will pay for any related expenses.
The Idaho National Guard has deployed out of state in support of national emergencies in the past. From Hurricane Katrina in 2005, wildland fire suppression in Oregon and Washington in 2015, to Puerto Rico for Hurricane Maria recovery support in 2017, the Idaho National Guard has provided hundreds of Soldiers and Airmen over the last decade in response to national emergencies.
More recently, the Idaho National Guard provided state emergency relief here at home during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Working on numbers and dates. Stay tuned.
— Mike Sharp (@Sharp208) June 4, 2020
This is a breaking news story and will be updated.