NJ, Pa. National Guard deployed to DC to quell riots, helps with inauguration

MOORESTOWN, New Jersey (WPVI) -- As chaos unfolded on Capitol Hill on Wednesday, troopers with the New Jersey State Police were there to help establish order.

More than 70 troopers from all divisions mobilized at the request of D.C. officials.

Troopers arrived just as things took a turn for the worse.

"Almost immediately we were in contact with not only the Capitol Police but with D.C. Metro, we have a long-standing relationship with them because of our involvements in all of the inaugurations," said New Jersey State Police Superintendent Colonel Patrick Callahan.

On Thursday morning, Governor Phil Murphy was not mincing words in response to the harrowing imagery of rioters taking over the Capitol that has shocked the world.

"They were not protestors, they were domestic terrorists, and again they must pay a price for what they did yesterday," Murphy said.

The governor has also activated 500 members of the NJ National Guard to head down to D.C. this weekend: their role assisting in the peaceful transfer of power.

About 40 members arrived at the Guard Training Center in Sea Girt, New Jersey late Thursday.

"They will be there at least through the inauguration," said Murphy.

As far as what measures are being taken in the Garden State in response, officials are not going into specifics, but say they are prepared should a threat arrive.

"We take the posture from a preparedness standpoint and certainly do bolster our efforts," Callahan said.

"We are watching what happened yesterday and taking the necessary steps," Murphy said. "We're not going to get caught with our feet up here. We're going to make sure that we're prepared."

How long troopers will remain in D.C. is still unclear. Fifty troopers were already slated to head down for the inauguration.

Late Thursday, Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf announced the deployment of about 1,000 Pennsylvania National Guard members to the nation's capital.
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