St. Joseph County SWAT team receives re-purposed military vehicle

By: NewsCenter 16 Email
By: NewsCenter 16 Email

ST. JOSEPH COUNTY St. Joseph County has a new SWAT vehicle, and it's aimed at protecting people in the event of an active shooter situation.

The Metro SWAT team received a U.S. military MRAP vehicle.

That stands for "Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected."

It will make its debut to the public in the Mishawaka Memorial Day Parade on Monday.

The brand new vehicle is valued at $733,000, but St. Joseph County received it at no cost from the U.S. government. When delivered, the vehicle only had eight miles on the odometer.

They were being used for our military overseas, but when it was no longer needed, the U.S. government started giving them to police departments.

Local police say its primary police function will be as a rescue vehicle for potential victims and to protect officers in dangerous situations.

From a Mishawaka Police Department press release:

St. Joseph County Metro S.W.A.T. Team has been selected to receive a donated United States Military M.R.A.P. vehicle valued at $733,000.

The M.R.A.P. has been delivered as scheduled to make a debut in the Mishawaka Memorial Day Parade on Monday, May 26, 2014. There will be a press conference on Friday, May 23, 2014 at 9:00 a.m. in front of the Mishawaka Police Department 200 N. church Street where the media will get their first look at the new M.R.A.P.

The acronym M.R.A.P stands for Mine Resistant Ambush Protected Vehicle. The vehicle itself was produced by BAE systems in Sealy Texas at a cost of $733,000 for the United States Military.

The vehicle was designed for a multitude of uses such as convoy troop transport, ambulance service, and so on. It has 85% commonality with standard trucks and is easily serviced. This was one of the determining factors why it was selected by the United States Marine Corps.

In 2010 the U.S. Military contracted BAE Systems to upgrade the M.R.A.P. During the course of the upgrades the need was reduced overseas and the military halted the production and did not receive further shipments.

On December 2011 the M.R.A.P. was the last vehicle convoy out of the eight year war in Iraq. In October of 2013 the federal government began offering the M.R.A.P. to local law enforcement.

The St. Joseph County Metro S.W.A.T. Team, comprising of officers from the Mishawaka and St. Joseph Co. Police Department, entered into the federal program and was selected as one of the departments nationwide to receive one of the upgraded M.R.A.P.’s.

The $733,000 vehicle was donated to our community by the U.S. Government. Our vehicle is not a refurbished hand me down. Mishawaka received shipment direct from the factory. The vehicle had only eight miles on it at the time of delivery.

The vehicle’s primary police function will be that of a rescue vehicle. The M.R.A.P is well suited for safe transport of innocent victims from an active shooter situation that may occur in our schools, workplace, or many retail sites. Direct delivery of emergency medical personal to a violent ongoing situation is a great asset to our community. The M.R.A.P will also be used to protect officers and bring a safe resolution to armed situations that may arise in our community.

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