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Image: EMILY McMANAMY, Free Press

Vermont State Police Director Thomas L’Esperance said Sunday that if the new armored vehicle saves just one life or prevents any injury, it will be worth it. They can be used for active shooting cases, serving high-risk arrest warrants or trying to get suspects to come out of barricaded buildings.

The bullet-proof vehicle also can be used to rescue injured or wounded persons without putting the lives of responding officers and others in jeopardy, L’Esperance said.

“It can also be used to defuse situations,” he said. Much like when police dogs arrive at scenes, the suspects will often rethink their positions, so do people seeing an armored personnel vehicle arriving, L’Esperance said.

The Vermont vehicle cost $255,398 with $189,400 coming from Homeland Security grants. Assets forfeited by convicted drug dealers were used to cover the remaining $65,998, L’Esperance said. The state took delivery in early September and began training with it about two weeks later.

Source: Mike Donoghue for Burlington Free Press.

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