The City Council granted approval for the Culver City Police Department to purchase two military-grade armored vans at the City Council meeting on Monday evening, July 11.
Action Item 2 read, “Approval of a purchase order with international armored group u.s., inc. for two armored Ford transit vans in an amount not-to-exceed $427,000.”
A CCPD presentation stated that, “In 2019 CCPD staff identified the need for and budgeted funds to purchase an emergency rescue vehicle, Lenco BearCat [for the purposes of] emergency preparedness, vital piece of equipment for dealing with violent encounters, full-service Police Department. Received some community concerns about the vehicle’s military appearance. Being responsive to those concerns, we identified an alternative vehicle.”
That vehicle is the armored Ford transit van, which would be used during incidents with armed, violent suspects, active shooter incidents, mass casualty incidents, hostage rescue, barricaded suspects, crisis negotiations, evacuating injured persons, mutual aid operations, and high-risk search warrant operations.
The amount of $427,000 was approved by the City Council in the 2022/23 budget, and it won’t be taken from the General Fund. While there were concerns from the public speakers about the CCPD having “military equipment,” most spoke in favor of the police having whatever equipment they say they need.
The item passed 3-1, with Council Member Yasmine- Imani McMorrin the one nay. Mayor Dr. Daniel Lee abstained.