Armed protesters gathered at the Ohio State Capitol on Sunday afternoon, as state houses across the country tightened security to deal with the possibility of civil unrest ahead of opening day.
About 50 protesters, some armed with assault weapons and other firearms, escorted a “Freedom or Death” flag to the Statehouse in Columbus at 11 am, according to USA Today.
Ohio is an open transport state, which means authorized owners can display their guns.
The crowd included both supporters of President Trump and counter-protesters, at least one of whom carried a Black Lives Matters flag, according to local station WBNS.
By 2:30 p.m. most were gone.
The Ohio State Highway Patrol told the CBS affiliate that by mid-afternoon no arrests had been made.
Governor Mike DeWine authorized the deployment of up to 580 National Guard members to secure government buildings in Buckeye State ahead of President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration, according to USA Today.
Two hundred kilometers away, a handful of armed protesters affiliated with right-wing militias gathered Sunday afternoon at the Statehouse in Lansing, Mich.
No violence was reported.