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Two Troop F troopers to be in first round of deployments to southern border


Two of the first 11 Missouri State High Patrol troopers to be sent to the U.S.-Mexico border will come from Troop F, which serves most of Mid-Missouri

Gov. Mike Parson announced his plans to send state resources, including troopers and national guardsmen, to Texas to help secure the southern border during a Tuesday press conference. Missouri would be sending approximately 200 members the state's National Guard and up to 22 Missouri State Highway Patrol troopers in support. 

Two more troopers will come from Troops B and I, while the other seven will come from General Headquarters, Division Drug and Crime, Troop A, C, D and G. Troopers and National Guard members are expected to start arriving in early March and be in Texas for about 90 days, according to Tuesday's press conference.

"Right now, our obligation, we are still refining our operation operational details with the Texas Department of Public Safety," MSHP Col. Eric Olsen said on Tuesday. "But the plan right now is for us to be partnered with a Texas trooper riding with them in their vehicles near the border and answering calls."

Parson also cited fentanyl from coming into Missouri as a reason for increased border security. 

Missouri National Guard Maj. Gen. Levon Cumpton said National Guardsmen will be coordinating with the Texas National Guard, Department of Defense and supporting barrier placement.

"Those troops deploy in support of Department of Defense to support the Customs and Border Protection Agency and take missions from NORTHCOM and Task Force north of the border," Cumpton said.

Earlier this month, Parson traveled to the southern border with 13 other governors to show support for Texas Gov. Greg Abbott’s “Operation Lone Star.” Parson described the border as “complete and utter chaos.” 

Parson criticized President Joe Biden for his “open border policy.” Since Biden took office in January 2021, more than 6.3 million migrants have been detained crossing into the U.S. illegally between points of entry, according to statistics from the Department of Homeland Security.

The number of migrant encounters on the southern border was on the rise even before Biden took office, but hit a record high under his administration. The global pandemic and crises in countries such as Ukraine, Haiti and Venezuela have all contributed to the increase, according to Homeland Security. 

In early February United States senators unveiled a long-awaited cross-party bill that aims to combat illegal immigration at the US-Mexico border and allow for new aid to Ukraine and Israel. The bill received intense backlash from conservatives, who say the border policy isn't good enough.

Article Topic Follows: Missouri

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Jazsmin Halliburton


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