College cops score defense supplies

Aug 26, 2014 by

Allie Grasgreen – Florida International University campus police have military-grade rifles. Ohio State has a Mine Resistant Ambush Protection vehicle. And Florida State has a brand new Army Humvee. These Pentagon hand-me-downs are just a few examples of the militarization of local police that has extended to college campuses — raising fresh questions about exactly why police departments would need such defense-grade hardware.

The Defense Department has been redistributing surplus military equipment to local law enforcement agencies since the early ’90s. But the recent unrest in Ferguson, Missouri — intensified by local cops’ use of tanks and gas masks and their participation in the federal program — prompted President Barack Obama on Saturday to order a review of its appropriateness.

Most items distributed through the Defense Logistics Agency’s Law Enforcement Support Office go to state and municipal government agencies. But a recent Freedom of Information Act request by MuckRock revealed that more than 100 college campuses with sworn-in police departments also participate in the 1033 program as of last December.

(Also on POLITICO: The incredible shrinking defense industry)

The institutions include community colleges, large research universities, liberal arts campuses and entire college systems.

via College cops score defense supplies – Allie Grasgreen – POLITICO.com.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.