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SD city of Belle Fouche ramps up police firepower

BELLE FOURCHE, S.D. (AP) - The northwestern South Dakota city of Belle Fourche is ramping up the firepower of its police department in response to its location along highways that lead to North Dakota's booming oil fields.

The Belle Fourche Police Department will have six new rifles in its arsenal thanks to a $6,000 grant from the South Dakota Drug Control Fund.

Police Chief Scott Jones says the rifles are similar to the military's M16 rifles. He says they'll provide officers with greater range and accuracy than their current pistols and shotguns.

U.S. Highway 85 is carrying increased traffic from Interstate 90 and Belle Fourche north to the North Dakota oil fields. Jones says the grant is recognition by state officials that local officers need better equipment.

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