San Diego Unified School District receives combat vehicle

SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – There is a lot of public concern being raised about police departments being militarized, and deploying military equipment including armored vehicles, and assaults rifles. Now, a combat vehicle is in the hands of the school district, and military combat gear is in six police departments in San Diego County.

The MRAP was delivered to the school district in late April. Its gun turret, and all weaponry were stripped.

MRAPS are waterproof, fire proof, bullet proof, and can survive explosions. It is a formidable offensive weapon on the battlefield.

School police Chief Ruben Little John says this has nothing to do with militarizing schools.

“This vehicle was not acquired for the purposes of coming after the public but rather to aid the public in getting their children to them,” he says.

Instead, the armored vehicle will be retrofitted as a research and rescue vehicle and will look differently than it originally did.

It was not the confrontations between protesters and police in Ferguson, Missouri, that caught the attention of Chief Little John.

It was Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Connecticut, nearly four years ago, when a gunman killed 26 people, 20 of them students.

“The classrooms that their held in are not resistant to the firepower that we’ve seen in the past at sandy hook and so for that reason we will pull the vehicle into the school, the back of the vehicle to the door of the classroom, allow officers to provide safe entrance of students and staff into the vehicle,” he adds.

The vehicle will be equipped with medical supplies, teddy bears, trauma kits, first aid and CPR equipment. All of it has been donated.

The MRAPS cost upwards of $700,000, but it came to San Diego free and being retrofitted as a search and rescue vehicle.

The school district has received vests and other equipment from the military but not weapons.

The military has sent M-14 and M-16 riffles to six different police agencies in San Diego County, most of them to San Diego Police.

San Diego and Escondido also got armored vehicles.

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