Tracy PD adds armored vehicle to force
by Glenn Moore
Jun 27, 2013 | 6414 views | 19 19 comments | 95 95 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The Tracy Police Department’s new Lenco BearCat armored truck drives on Patterson Pass Road following runners in the Special Olympics Law Enforcement Torch Run on Friday, June 21. The department acquired the truck in April.  Glenn Moore/Tracy Press
The Tracy Police Department’s new Lenco BearCat armored truck drives on Patterson Pass Road following runners in the Special Olympics Law Enforcement Torch Run on Friday, June 21. The department acquired the truck in April. Glenn Moore/Tracy Press
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A new armored vehicle has hit the road for the Tracy Police Department with the purpose of keeping officers and civilians safe during tactical situations.

The department added the 2012 Lenco BearCat armored personnel carrier in April, when two officers drove the vehicle to Tracy from Massachusetts.

Lt. Mark Duxbury, who oversees the SWAT team, said the vehicle will be used when officers could be at risk from someone who is armed.

The vehicle will be used primarily by SWAT team members during situations such as barricaded standoffs and the serving of search warrants for robberies, narcotics and homicide cases.

“Basically, it’s an armored vehicle,” Duxbury said. “It gives us some ballistic protection from small-arms fire.”

He declined to comment on specific capabilities of the truck, but said “it is very easy to operate.”

The Tracy City Council approved the purchase of the vehicle during an August council meeting. Chief Gary Hampton told council members the vehicle would have armor plating, gun ports and infrared capabilities.

The armored truck replaces a bank-style armored transport that broke down years ago.

SWAT officers have used the new BearCat twice to serve search warrants, including the raid of a hash lab on May 30.

The cost of the $282,000 vehicle was covered by a $100,000 federal grant from the Department of Homeland Security and asset forfeiture proceeds from the police department.

Duxbury said the truck is “an added layer of security to operate.”

For example, in the case of an armed person barricaded in a house, Duxbury said the truck would carry officers to the scene safe from gunfire.

“We can drive up on the driveway and use the vehicle to shield them and transport our officers there and safely transport residents out,” Duxbury said.

At the end of a recent vehicle pursuit, the driver barricaded himself inside a home on Oak Court, and Tracy police had to rely on an armored vehicle from the Ceres Police Department to safely move residents out of neighboring homes.

“It is safer for us and the neighboring residents,” Duxbury said. “Without the truck, it would take longer and add risk to personnel.”

About half of the department’s officers are trained to drive the BearCat, Duxbury said.

“The vehicle is assigned to SWAT, but the entire department will have access to use it,” he said.

The BearCat was also used by Tracy police officers running the Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics on Friday, June 21.

Duxbury said the public can get a closer look at the vehicle during National Night Out on Aug. 6 and at the police department’s safety fair on Sept. 28.

• Contact Glenn Moore at 830-4252 or gmoore@tracypress.com.
Comments
(19)
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cody01
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July 04, 2013
Whatever, I still want one.lol
backinblack
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July 02, 2013
CJSG, Oh I see, I'm dealing with another person who prefers histrionics over reality and also seems to not have much understanding of history. Let's review, you are the one who believes we live under tyranny and slave like conditions, whereas I believe you are terribly misguided.

I suggest you do a little research to learn what real tyranny looks like. If you want one of the best examples from the last century study Nazi Germany.

In regards to your belief we live as slaves I suggest learning what real slaves actually suffered through. You can start with the conditions they were forced to go through on the boat ride from Africa to North America. Maybe you can go back a little further in history and learn about slave conditions in ancient Egypt.

If you have the skills to comprehend and put things in the proper context you should come to the realization we actually have a pretty good life in what I believe to be the greatest country on earth.

For now, please explain how on a day to day basis you suffer under slave like conditions and tyranny. While your paranoid little mind looks for answers let me tell you about the wonderful things I can do as free man and US citizen.

cont..
backinblack
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July 02, 2013
Everyday, I can eat what I want when I want, workout when I want, hop in my car and drive wherever I want, fly wherever I want, say whatever I want about whoever I want - of course within the bounds of decency and reasonable control of the law(libel & slander), proclaim I do not believe in a higher being without being persecuted, conduct business as I choose, work as hard or as little as I choose - for me it's always max effort, I can go on and on but hopefully you get the point which is when you get right down to it believing we live under tyranny or slave like conditions is rather absurd.

Sure, you, me, and others can point to many areas of government overreach, too much taxation, etc, but tyranny, slavery? I don't think so pal. Our system isn't perfect but who's is, do you prefer lawlessness and zero rules? I wonder.
EllieS
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July 02, 2013
You can't argue with stupid.

If CJSG thinks we live in a police state, he should travel to North Korea. We have so many rights and freedoms, it's laughable what he says!

I think it's safe to say he is paranoid and probably wears aluminum foil on his head.
CJSG
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July 01, 2013
@ backinblack: OH LOOK! A little tyranny lover!! How about YOU move out of the country since you're soooo anti-freedom? BE GONE! BYE BYE
ertion
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June 30, 2013
DTB1445, how many incidents have there been where bad guys go out with a death wish as the two bandidos did in that bank robbery you mentioned? How many have there been in Tracy?

The city of Tracy has managed for all of its existence without resorting to armored personel carriers. It is pretty sad to think the police feel themselves so threatened that they have to have something like this.

The paradigm of this type of equipment is indeed military, not peacekeeping. It leads to regarding citizens as potential threats and ratchets up the officers unnecessarily. This leads to events as occurred down in LA in the Dorner case, where women were shot in the back and others had their cars riddled with bullets by would be Ramboes with badges, firing wildly at shadows.

DTB1445
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July 01, 2013
Well.. ertion, according to the article.. their prior armored vehicle broke down and was unusable. Additionally, it's not the police Dept's fault people barricade themselves in their homes with high powered rifles and threaten the greater public. Vehicles like these enable the police to safely remove innocent people caught in dangerous situations.

If your mind is so slanted into thinking the police are the enemy, then I cannot change your way of thinking. I see them as the ones who come when you call 911, and do whatever they can, with whatever resources they have to resolve your situation.

I cheer this new resource as a tool to respond to the very clear deadly threat people who hate the police present to the public. Reading responses like yours makes me even happier this is available to them.

In my experience, the people who complain the most, are the ones most affected. If you have nothing to worry about, then why would you be concerned?
mdsmith17
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July 01, 2013
How many times do you think it has to happen before they get an armored car? How many police officers in your opinion need to die before they were to make this expense? Do you think maybe it's better to buy something like this before you need it, than to wait until a few officers are killed and then buy one? Have you even paid attention to the numbers of officers killed already this year? This vehicle is almost strictly a defensive weapon. It does not have a gun mounted on it. It is used almost exclusively to protect officers and keep them safe. If you don't care about the officers lives, do you care about your tax dollars? Do you realize how much money it costs the tax payers when an officer is killed or seriously injured? This vehicle could pay for itself 10 times over in just one incident.
ertion
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July 03, 2013
DTB1445, from the litany of emotional statements made in your post, I would be inclined to believe you were the person who ordered this vehicle. I'm not against a bulletproof vehicle for officer safety. I simply think acquiring and using military equipment for police work sends absolutely the wrong message to everyone involved.

MDSmith17: "This vehicle is almost strictly a defensive weapon..used almost exclusively to protect officers..."

It's the "almost" part we should be concerned about. There's a psyops intimidation dimension to vehicles like this that are appropriate to an occupation force but not to your local constable. An armored paddy wagon would be appropriate. Tanks and half tracks are not. Our constables are not soldiers, we are not potential enemies lurking about in our houses.

These kinds of things drive a wedge between the officers and the people they are sworn to serve.

And for the record, if I have time to call 911, I have time to arm and protect myself. After all, when seconds count, 911 help is only minutes away.

mdsmith17
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July 03, 2013
Once again, this is not a military vehicle or weapon system. It has no weapons mounted on it. I used the word almost because it can be used in an offensive manner if it is needed to bust open a fortified house. Otherwise it's for defense. I guess you can dislike it all you want. The only people I see it driving a wedge between are people who are going to hate law enforcement no matter what they do. I have a feeling you may fall into that category since you don't have the ability to see that this vehicle is designed to save lives of cops and citizens and that is it's primary missions.
drumhead
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July 04, 2013
P.S. take a good look at the picture of this monstrocity and realize that this overpriced "chest thumper" could be disabled in minutes by any two bit thug who's got a 30 year old copy of the Anarchist's Cookbook...

drumhead
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July 04, 2013
P.S. take a good look at the picture of this monstrocity and realize that this overpriced "chest thumper" could be disabled in minutes by any two bit thug who's got a 30 year old copy of the Anarchist's Cookbook...

ertion
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July 06, 2013
So far, it looks like Tracy PD in the main does the right thing. This should NOT be taken for granted. It is our responsibility as citizens to be VIGILANT. Why should we assume the city and police will always do the right thing?

Take a look at this interactive map from the CATO institute at how police are behaving in other jurisdictions. It is not a pretty tale and we must make sure it does not happen here:

http://www.cato.org/raidmap
CJSG
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June 28, 2013
Gotta love the militarization of the police in the nation. Welcome to the police state. This is so beyond UNNECESSARY it's not even funny. Of course there are the brain dead people out there who will defend this and claim it's wonderful but that's because they love their slavery. Land of the free? YA RIGHT.
DTB1445
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June 28, 2013
CJSG, what you don't understand is that this is a reactionary thing. Cops used to only carry six shooters and shot guns, then a bank robbery happened in LA where the bad guys where armed with fully automatic AK-47's and 100 round drum magazines. Additionally they were heavily protected by advanced body armor. Many civilians were injured in the shoot out which was started by the bank robbers. The LAPD were totally outmatched by the firepower of these guys, and this was not an isolated incident. Law enforcement in general, were outgunned and the police issue protective vests could not stop an assault weapon bullet. This is why they now need vehicles like this. It is a response to a new type of threat to society, unheard of 20 years ago. So...
backinblack
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June 30, 2013
Brain dead would apply to people ignorant enough to compare what real slaves suffered through to our current living conditions which last time I checked are still pretty good.

Tell you what, write an essay on exactly why we live in a police state and a condition of slavery, then write about why another country of your choise is a better place to live. If lucid and based on fact, I will do my best to start a fund I'm sure many would be willing to contribute to which will provide funds for you to purchase a one way ticket to the country of your choosing.

Oh how wonderful it would be for you to proclaim your freedom.
mdsmith17
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July 01, 2013
And again this is not a military weapon because if it were it would have some giant weapons attached to it. The military does not use these vehicles. These vehicles are used by civilian law enforcement and they are almost exclusively a defensive system and not an offensive weapon system like military vehicles. I don't feel one bit enslaved by this vehicle and I can't figure out how it enslaves you either, unless you have plans to barricade yourself in a building and hold off the SWAT team.
drumhead
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July 04, 2013
What DTB1445 doesn't understand is that if those cops in L.A. 20 years back had spent a little more time at the shooting range and a little less writing tickets they could save $282,000...
cody01
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June 28, 2013
I want one.lol


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