In the past month, police departments have been adding armored vehicles to their fleets. These are surplus vehicles from the military, usually obtained at little to no cost to the police departments, but the fleet additions often create discussion about the militarization of police departments.
The Madison (Ind.) Police Department in September added a mine-resistant ambush protection vehicle (MRAP) to its fleet, although it expected something similar to an armored Hummer, the Madison Courier reported. The City plans to keep the no-cost vehicle at the City garage until it is needed.
Ohio State University also added a no-cost armored military vehicle to its fleet in September. The Daily Caller reported the vehicle is a replacement for a police vehicle that will function as an all-hazard, all-purpose response vehicle.
The Yuma Police Department in Arizona unveiled its own no-cost, borrowed MRAP on Oct. 3, the Yuma Sun reported. It will be used by the Special Enforcement Team for high-risk operations.
The Eureka (Calif.) Police Department acquired an MRAP in order to respond to possible active shooter and hostage scenarios, the Eureka Times-Standard stated. Eureka Police Chief Murl Harpham told the newspaper that the Department of Defense wanted to offload 200 MRAPs and received requests from 800 police agencies.