News Minute: Here is the latest North Dakota news from The Associated Press at 11:40 a.m. CST

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BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - Authorities in North Dakota spent more than $600,000 to equip officers policing protests of the Dakota Access pipeline. Invoices reviewed by The Associated Press showed the money went for everything from body armor to night-vision goggles to pepper spray. The state says the equipment was necessary for months of sometimes violent protests that led to more than 700 arrests. North Dakota bought the equipment from Minneapolis-based police equipment company Streicher's.

MINOT, N.D. (AP) - Law enforcement agencies in Minot say they're struggling to combat crime even after the slowdown in area oil activity. The Minot Daily News reports that Minot Police Chief Jason Olsen says law enforcement agencies remain "strained and stressed" fighting violent crime, drug crime, prostitution and human trafficking. Olsen says these areas of criminal activity have all increased at a rate greater than the population growth.

BISMARCK, North Dakota (AP) - North Dakota is a state ripe for Republicans to expand their majority in the Senate. But despite Donald Trump winning in a landslide last year, the GOP is struggling to land a big name to run against Democratic Sen. Heidi Heitkamp in 2018. Right now, the Republicans' lone Senate candidate is Tom Campbell, a little-known state lawmaker and potato farmer. The slow start has some worried the GOP is ceding the early advantage to Heitkamp.

ATLANTA (AP) - Conservative Alabama has elected a Democrat who supports abortion rights. Some may think Doug Jones' upset win over Roy Moore is a one-off against a Republican accused of molesting teen girls. But exit polls showed Jones drew important crossover votes from Republicans who oppose abortion rights. That has Democrats and Republicans agreeing that abortion may take a backseat to other issues in 2018 midterm elections, particularly in places less conservative than Alabama.

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