National Guard to deploy to Chicago ahead of Derek Chauvin verdict

CHICAGO (WLS) -- The Illinois National Guard will deploy to Chicago ahead of an expected verdict in the murder trial of former Minneapolis Police Officer Derek Chauvin in the death of George Floyd.

At the request of Mayor Lori Lightfoot, Gov. JB Pritzker said he will deploy 125 National Guard members to stand by to support the Chicago Police Department beginning Tuesday.

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"The Illinois National Guard will carry out a limited mission to help manage street closures and will not interfere with peaceful protestors exercising their First Amendment rights, much the same role as Guard members played in previous deployments," Pritzker's office said in a written statement.

Soldiers assigned to the mission are from the 33rd Military Police Battalion and are specially trained in riot control operations, the statement said.

"It is critical that those who wish to peacefully protest against the systemic racism and injustice that holds back too many of our communities continue to be able to do so. Members of the Guard and the Illinois State Police will support the City of Chicago's efforts to protect the rights of peaceful protestors and keep our families safe," Pritzker said in a written statement Monday.

Pritzker's office also said the Illinois State Police will support CPD with additional troopers.

ISP told the I-Team they're in contact with the Chicago Police Department to help with peaceful protests and keep the community safe. They have not been asked to help in Minnesota, like some other local states have.
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