While awaiting pipeline ruling, N.D. recruits law officers to help guard site of protest that turned violent over the weekend
BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — North Dakota authorities are recruiting law enforcement officers from across the state to guard the site of a protest in anticipation of an impending federal ruling on whether to block the construction of the four-state Dakota Access oil pipeline.
The buildup, announced Wednesday, comes after a skirmish between protesters and private security guards Saturday that turned violent; the crowd dispersed when officers arrived, and no one was arrested. Authorities also said they pulled back Tuesday from responding to a report of 150 to 200 protesters, some with hatchets and knives, gathered at a construction area on private land because they determined it wasn't safe to respond.
A ruling is expected by Friday on the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe's challenge of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' decision to grant permits to the Dallas, Texas-based operators of the $3.8 billion Dakota Access Pipeline. The pipeline will cross North Dakota, South Dakota, Iowa and Illinois.