- Associated Press - Wednesday, May 25, 2016

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - Police in Bismarck are dedicating about a quarter of their force for security when Republican presidential hopeful Donald Trump comes to North Dakota’s capital city.

Sgt. Mark Buschena said about 30 officers will be assigned to the event Thursday at the Bismarck Event Center. Trump is keynoting the Williston Basin Petroleum Conference and Expo, which is expected to be attended by about 7,000 people.

Buschena, a 36-year police veteran, said it’s the most officers Bismarck has dedicated to an event. Another 45 law officers from other local jurisdictions will help out, he said.

Bismarck police have been coordinating security with the Secret Service since Trump’s campaign announced the Bismarck stop earlier this month.

“The Secret Service is in charge of Trump’s security and the police department will make sure everybody else is safe at the event,” Buschena said.



Police said the Secret Service determines the level of risk and develops a security plan.

Some Trump events this campaign have been marred by clashes between his supporters and protesters. A rally Tuesday in Albuquerque turned violent as anti-Trump protesters clashed with police.

Buschena said the police have reached out to identify groups planning demonstrations to ensure there are no problems.

“We haven’t had any indication there will be trouble,” said Ron Ness, president of the North Dakota Petroleum Council, which sponsors the event along with the state. “We anticipate everybody to be ‘North Dakota nice.’”

The address from Trump is included in the expo’s $400 registration fee, but a ticket for his address alone is $30. Nearly 2,700 people are attending the expo, while the Trump speech is expected to draw another 4,000 people.

Ness said the tickets for the speech “were essentially sold out” Wednesday.

The arena in downtown Bismarck will be cleared Thursday morning and expo-goers will have to re-enter through a security checkpoint, Ness said.

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