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Published On: Thu, May 21st, 2015

President Obama executive order targets police equipment, adds ‘Police Czar’

President Obama issued a new executive order prohibiting the federal government from providing certain military style equipment to local police departments. The order also adds Federal oversight and a group with oversight responsibilities.

Citing violent confrontations in Ferguson and Baltimore, the President hopes the order eases tensions between citizens and police. The President views the equipment as causing more harm than good and escalating fears and tensions.

“We’re going to prohibit some equipment made for the battlefield that is not appropriate for local police departments,” Obama said in a visit to Camden, New Jersey.

Items now banned in the president’s executive order include tracked armored vehicles, grenade launchers, high-caliber weapons and ammunition. The order also puts more restrictions on surplus items that are still allowed. Some may now require city council or county commissioner approval before being put into use.

photo donkeyhotey

photo donkeyhotey

“[The] Spokane Police Department and Chief Straub completely agree with the president. We do not believe in the militarization of the police department,” Spokane Police Cpl. Jordan Ferguson said.

Ferguson added the department has found education to be its best weapon.

“We have a hundred percent of our officers through the crisis intervention training now, and we’ve seen a 22 percent reduction in use of force last year,” he said.

Meanwhile Spokane County Sheriff Ozzie Knezovich has been a staunch supporter of military surplus items, such as the Air 1 helicopter and the Mine Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicle.

“When we have a school shooting we can bring that vehicle right up into school, right up next to it and deploy and rescue people and get wounded people out without worry about being shot ourselves,” Knezovich said.

Critics are already pointing out that the order also adds an oversight layer to the Federal goverment and a tracking mechansim linked ot the Digital Services division.

From the order:

Increase Federal Government Oversight and Compliance.

The Federal Government will expand its monitoring and compliance capabilities to ensure that LEAs acquiring controlled equipment adhere to protocols, training, information collection and retention, and other requirements proposed by the recommendations this report.

Additionally, the Federal Government will create a permanent interagency working group to, among other things, evaluate the Controlled and Prohibited Equipment Lists for additions and deletions, track controlled equipment purchased with Federal resources, develop Government‐wide criteria for evaluating applications and conducting compliance reviews, and sharing information on sanctions and violations by LEA applicants. The United States Digital Service will assist Federal agencies in the creation of a database that tracks information about controlled equipment acquired through Federal programs.

Translation: A Police Czar will now oversee what the police departments are receiving as a database is/will be established to track behavior and transactions.

About the Author

- Writer and Co-Founder of The Global Dispatch, Brandon has been covering news, offering commentary for years, beginning professionally in 2003 on Crazed Fanboy before expanding into other blogs and sites. Appearing on several radio shows, Brandon has hosted Dispatch Radio, written his first novel (The Rise of the Templar) and completed the three years Global University program in Ministerial Studies to be a pastor. To Contact Brandon email [email protected] ATTN: BRANDON

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