Barriers, police added for Pennsylvania Capitol security

Barriers, police added for Pennsylvania Capitol security
ThePennsylvania capitol complex is seen, Tuesday Jan. 12, 2021 in Harrisburg, Pa. (AP Photo/Jacqueline Larma) (Jacqueline Larma /AP)

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — The agency that protects the Pennsylvania Capitol building said Thursday officials are not aware of specific threats to the facility but are bolstering security measures.

Troy Thompson with the Department of General Services, which oversees Capitol Police, said there are additional officers inside and out, and barriers have been erected in recent days.

He noted Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf has not issued an order to close the downtown Harrisburg complex next week, but that could change if necessary.

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State capitols around the United States have heightened security after the attack on the U.S. Capitol last week. The FBI has warned there are calls for armed protests at state capitals and in Washington, D.C., on Sunday and ahead of President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration on Wednesday.

Waist-high orange plastic barriers were in place at several spots around the Capitol on Thursday morning, keeping pedestrians away from walkways and side doors. Two heavily armed officers were stationed outside, and another was patrolling hallways in the largely vacant Main Capitol.

Most Capitol employees under Wolf’s jurisdiction currently work remotely, and the ornate building is closed to the general public because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Thompson said police continue to monitor the potential for violence or unrest. The state police and Capitol Police plan to discuss preparations during an online news conference later Thursday.