Hundreds of law enforcement officers from North Dakota have been deployed to the Dakota Access Pipeline protests in recent months, and now many of them are reportedly being harassed.
The Morton County sheriff’s office told WDAY that protesters have been harassing officers –following them and taking photos of them. More recently, however, their families have become targets of harassment too.
Protesters are reportedly publicizing the personal information of officers—their home addresses, and the names of their spouses and children
Sgt. Tim Bruggeman with the Cass County Sheriff’s Office says, it’s one thing to have to deal with this as a cop, but to put your family members at risk is extremely intimidating.
“It is fearful that when you sign up to be a cop, you know the risks, and families are supportive of it, but they did not sign up to be harassed or come home from the grocery store with a couple of children and someone is standing at the front door because your address is posted.”
But law enforcement officials say they won’t be deterred by this tactic, known as “doxing.” Deputies from around the state have been on ‘rotating tours’ out to the pipeline protests since August and will continue doing so until they have to.
The oil pipeline was approved in July and its route is expected to run through four states. The Army Corps of Engineers has indicated that it would be allowed to run under the Missouri River, close to the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe’s reservation. Hundreds of Native Americans from across the country have set up a camp near the construction site in south-central North Dakota. The group is finding a willing ally in environmental groups. Protesters worry that the pipeline could disturb sacred sites and affect the reservation’s drinking water.
The company building it says the pipeline could carry more than half of the state’s daily crude production. Officials with the North Dakota Petroleum Council say state-of-the-art equipment will monitor the pipeline—which is a big part of the nation’s energy strategy to deliver cheap oil.
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