Members of Congress and law enforcement are bracing for Saturday’s “Justice for J6” rally that will be held in D.C. in support of the nearly 600 people jailed for their efforts in storming the U.S. Capitol earlier this year.
According to The Hill, law enforcement is expected to be in full force as they prepare for a potential repeat of the deadly riot that took place during certification of the 2020 Electoral College votes.
"As we look across social media, there are calls on some of the disparate sites for folks to come armed," D.C. Deputy Mayor for Public Safety Chris Geldart told a local NBC affiliate on Tuesday.
"We’ve seen that before on a lot of our other events," he added. "So, this is reminding folks that come to the District what our laws are here and that, you know, you can't carry a gun here."
Although D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser has not asked for support from the National Guard, Geldart says they could be deployed at any moment if requested.
According to the Washington Post, fencing has already been erected around the Capitol, but it could be removed as early as the following Monday after the rally.
“I urge anyone who is thinking about causing trouble to stay home. We will enforce the law and not tolerate violence,” said U.S. Capitol Police Chief J. Thomas Manger in a statement to reporters.
The statement referenced “concerning online chatter” but did not describe what that entailed.
The Capitol Police have already issued an emergency declaration that will allow the force to deputize outside law enforcement as “special” Capitol Police officers during the demonstration.