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Billings police gearing up for Trump visit

Posted at 6:40 PM, Sep 04, 2018
and last updated 2019-07-17 14:51:46-04

BILLINGS- It will be all hands on deck for the Billings Police Department Thursday for President Trump’s rally at MetraPark, according to Chief Rich St. John.

While many resources will be focused on the president’s visit, the department still has to staff for normal day to-day business in the city, St. John said.

“First and foremost, we want to have an excellent visit. We want to make sure that everybody is safe, not only the protectee but the public,” said St. John. “We anticipate some protesters so we want to make sure that that is handled appropriately, that they have their right to free speech and expression, yet we want to make sure that we don’t infringe on anybody else’s rights. It will be a big task for the police department and our partners, but we are looking forward to it.”

Chief St. John said one of the biggest hits the department will take is the overtime costs.

For instance, St. John said, Vice President Mike Pence’s visit to Billings on July cost the department $20,000 in overtime.

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Story by Zoe Zandora, MTN News