Mesquite Police Department Receives Armored Vehicle

FrontWhen Defense Department’s Excess Property Program announced in March of 2013 that armored vehicles were available to law enforcement agencies across the country, the Mesquite Police Department (MPD) wasted no time in submitting an application through the Nevada Department of Public Safety, Office of Justice Assistance to request a vehicle.

MPD’s Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) team has been in dire need of a replacement vehicle. The ancient black and white armored truck was well used when MPD received it many years ago. Nonetheless, MPD made due with the old vehicle, using it during S.W.A.T training, operations, and the execution of high risk search warrants. The vehicle was also used during many police and community events. Needless to say, the old armored truck received its fair share of use and suffers from major mechanical issues. Nevertheless, due to budgetary issues, the purchase of an updated special response vehicle was beyond reach.

“The old outdated armored truck was definitely a cause for great concern. We needed a dependable vehicle that would allow us to operate safely. When we discovered these types of vehicles were going to be made available I knew we had to be one of the first on the list,” said Police Chief Troy Tanner. After a year-long paper chase, the MPD received their armored vehicle.  It is referred to as the Mine Resistant Ambush Protected Vehicle and called an MRAP.  The brand new MRAP was picked up in Colorado with just 12 miles on the International engine.MRAP Arrival (6)

The Defense Department’s Excess Property Program provides law enforcement agencies access to many different types of equipment.  While there is no cost when the equipment is handed over, the cost of transporting and maintaining the equipment becomes the receiving agencies responsibility. The minimal cost of transporting the vehicle to Mesquite was approximately $1500. (Photos courtesy of MPD)

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  1. That thing is awesome but really is that really needed here in mesquite?

    • I agree with Kim. Seems like overkill and a questionable use of city resources. But you just can’t be too careful. Sometimes we senior citizens get upset when we lose at the casino or on the golf course. Then it would be time to call out the SWAT team to restore order.

    • Yes!! .. Have you ever been in front of Smith’s when fresh donuts were set out???

  2. ken grosh says:

    This is a nationwide trend that is disturbing. Why do small town cops need to be armed the teeth?

  3. R. Everett says:

    Here’s what gets me…………you have these folks who have never spent one day in the life of a police officer, second guessing and offering opinions, as to what may or may not be needed for police work. Would any of you EVER tell a Doctor how to operate on someone or tell a lawyer how to defend a case without first having the necessary education to be knowledgeable on the topic? Do you tell the firefighters what type of ambulance or fire truck to purchase? You probably have no idea how to fight fires or respond with a squad, so you wouldn’t even think of it. Quite frankly, why should you feel compelled tell the police what they do and don’t need as far as equipment? The piece of equipment was free from the Federal Government and didn’t cost a dime, other than to transport it to Mesquite. And frankly it brings up another point; you pay no income tax so there’s a chance you may not have even paid for it. Why don’t all of the naysayers who have no idea how to react to a situation(s) the police must deal and are trained to handle leave those decisions to the people who are paid to make them! Stop the Monday morning quarterbacking on things such as this. Unfortunately, the police department has the daunting task of making arrests and doing the things no one else wants to do, so for some, they must feel it gives them card blanche to have the right to second-guess or judge every decision they make. How about supporting them for having the initiative to seek out and find equipment, free of charge, and have it readily available if they need it, instead of needing a piece of equipment for an active shooter barricaded in a school and not having it. Think about it folks, unless you have spent a life-time in police work, you really should keep think before you speak on topics you have never done.

    • Myron Kirkpatrick says:

      I have never been a doctor, or a firefighter, or a police officer, but I agree wholeheartedly. It certainly shouldn’t be necessary, especially in a small, relatively rural community such as Mesquite — but unfortunately, this is the environment we have either helped create or allowed to be created around us and now we need to let those who know best deal with it in the manner that they, in their professional opinion, believe best. It does, however, make me very sad.

  4. D. Douglas says:

    ARMED TO THE TEETH!!!!!!!! People it is bullet Proof Vehicle!!! Nowhere doe sit say that it has the military weaponry attached. Cops get ambushed daily at their homes as we saw with Officer Nettles 2 years ago, responding to calls, patrolling the streets or just eating lunch as we witnessed 2 weeks ago. It happens in Small towns and in Big Towns. I know first hand as a spouse of a Law Enforcement Officer how hard our officers train so that they can come home to their families at the end of shift. As an Officers wife I am glad there is one more piece of equipment that betters my husbands chances and his fellow officers of doing just that, COMING HOME ALIVE!!!!! To you armchair quarterbacking, cops watching, CSI TV show certified detectives, please apply to the Police Academy. Pass the Academy and walk a mile in the shoes of our Law Enforcement. Maybe then you will understand the strain and sacrifice these men and women go through on a daily basis. Then lets see your responses to the equipment they use. Yours kids will probably be the first ones inside to look around as the Officers have the Vehicle open for Public display at the next citywide event as they do every year. It cost the Police Dept the money for transport here. Everything else was paid for by a grant.

    • Michele Burkett says:

      I agree, It is for officer safety To me its a reminder that it is illegal to point a gun at a law officer, any law officer, federal, state or municipal. Officers have sophisticated training including the ramifications of killing some and but they are authorized to enforce the law. Let’s also remember this past April when militia pointed guns at law enforcement and played armed cowboy. Knowingly pointing a gun at a person, a living human being is for trained officers not militia. NO OFFICER should ever face a gun. Let’s remember that the militia in Bunkerville/Mesquite was a terrible thing. The town of Mesquite wants to say it din’t happen here, it happened in Bunkerville, but it happened in Mesquite. Guns are for hunting, target practice and not for aiming at another person, the militia was just an outlaw on every level a criminal.

  5. Mark Reeping says:

    R. Everett (Bob) I couldn’t have explained it any better. Very Good. Being a Police Officer in DC area is crazy. You just don’t know the thoughts and actions of people now of days. I observed situations that are so unbelievable. Hard working and honest citizens, that never been in trouble with the law in their lives. Getting addicted to drugs and alcohol. Committing crimes against society to fuel their habit. The police need all the help and equipment they can get. Instead of criticizing the police. Just tell them thank you for making them safe…….Reep

  6. To say that the vehicle was free and didn’t cost anything is blatantly dishonest. You don’t really believe that the feds got the vehicle for free, do you? Where do you suppose grant money comes from? Tax dollars paid for the beast. Your dollars, my dollars, everybody’s dollars.

    • I have a couple of problems with this acquisition. First, nothing is free. Money will have to be spent on converting this to SWAT use, training for officers to drive it (55,000 lbs requires a different license) and maintenance. Most cities that have received these are spending about $60,000 for the conversion.
      Remember, the City Council wouldn’t approve a “free” water park for our kids, because of the annual maintenance costs.
      Second, how many times in the recent past would this thing have been needed here in Mesquite? How many hostage situations have played out in Mesquite in the past say ten years? I’m pretty sure the answer is close to zero, but if the answer isn’t a pretty big number, then it isn’t needed. I think the police should have been required to justify the need for this prior to getting it. Not some abstract, “the streets are violent and we need to be better armed than the bad guys” justification, but real statistics, real numbers.
      Third, when any government agency gets equipment like this, they tend to use it. If there are no hostage situations, they’ll use it for things like serving warrants for non-violent crimes.
      Fourth, this thing gets about one mile per gallon, tears up streets and is intended to protect soldiers during battles. Do we really need it?
      And finally, before people start with the “cops need all this stuff to be safe” “walk a mile in the cops shoes” stuff, I’d like to point out I have hundreds of actual arrests of fugitives, most of them here in Clark County. I never needed an MRAP and no one ever needed to be killed.
      This is a horrendous waste of money and just keeps making the situation more of an “us VS them” deal rather than a community that should live together.

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