Dallas County Now Has Its Very Own Bulletproof, "Mine-Protected" Military SUV

DSOMRAP.JPG
Dallas County
Soon to be outfitted with Dallas County Sheriff's Office livery.
Now that the war in Iraq is officially over and the one in Afghanistan winding down, the Department of Defense found itself facing a conundrum. It had just spent billions of dollars buying heavily armored personnel carriers designed to stand up to insurgent attacks only to find that it had run out of wars to use them in.

The initial plan was to shove the vehicles, called MRAPS (Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected) into a warehouse and let them collect dust. That changed when someone decided that, having served so admirably overseas, it would be only just to bring the MRAPs stateside and deploy them in the domestic war on crime.

And so, for the past couple of months, news reports have been popping up announcing that places like Murfreesboro, Tennessee and Ohio State University have been receiving their very own military-grade armored SUVs.

See also: District Attorney Craig Watkins' Epic Quest to Use a Former Drug Dealer's Porsche Boxter

Now, it's Dallas' turn. Dallas County sheriff's deputies traveled to Fort Hood earlier this month and picked up their very own International MaxxPro MRAP. This particular truck has never seen any actual combat, having only been deployed stateside for training exercises, so it doesn't have any cool battle scars, but with the dealer's $600,000 price tag knocked down to nothing, and with just 10,000 miles on it, the deal was too good to pass up.

After making the 160-mile drive back to Dallas from Fort Hood, deputy James Blesoe declared that the vehicle "exceeded expectations," according to a memo to Dallas County commissioner's.

OK. Pretty cool. But let's back up for a moment. There's a very glaring, very fundamental question we haven't yet addressed: Why in holy hell does Dallas County need an armored military vehicle built to withstand a minor apocalypse?

The underlying reason seems to be that military trucks are fucking cool, but no one's actually saying that. The sheriff's office is touting it as a tool that will help them better serve warrants.

"Having a tactical vehicle will not only provide warrants execution with the equipment to assist in performing their jobs but will provide an overall safety arch," Chief Deputy Marlin Suell wrote to commissioners.

Because there's no telling when North Texas might descend into sectarian warfare and start planting IEDs along Riverfront Boulevard.

To see the official document marking the Sheriff's acceptance of the MRAP as a designated "crime fighter vehicle," head to the next page.

Dallas County Military SUV memo

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522 comments
xdarkridex
xdarkridex

Man, you folks in Dallas County should be glad your tax money went towards buying this.  It's good to know, considering the amount of paramilitary attacks that occur.  Oh, wait, there aren't any?  They'll use it to raid crack houses and marijuana farms?  AWESOME.

jmatlansky
jmatlansky

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Jerry Atlansky

Rise In police brutality USA Today Newspaper 2007

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jmatlansky
jmatlansky

How to stop the rise of the USA Police State?

Google

Jerry Atlansky

Rise In police brutality USA Today Newspaper 2007

Program, Truly Reforming Law Enforcement (the nations only law that stops Police Kill at Will without due cause).

Ronald C. Ruecker America's Enemy # 1 as he lost three law suits harming many people in Oregon and now nationwide as he is FBI Assistant Director and Ruecker allows police repeatedly beat/kick restrained innocent people and also shoot to death when officers witness said illegal acts.

Contact us for more data that will give you ac chance to assist in protecting our country right from your home.

Thanks for your support.  Jerry Atlansky  jmatlansky@gmail.com  24/365

joevano
joevano

my home county in Michigan (with a population < 185k) picked up one of these too.  They also made the transition to military combat type uniforms.  Wonder how long until dallas county goes that way as well?

andyh1956
andyh1956

to fromtexasbygod- you sir are badly misinformed. I spent four years in Afghanistan as a field support rep for the Navistar corp on the maxxpro mrap. you will, let  me repeat, you WILL need very sophisticated  diagnostic software to maintain this truck. this is a drive by wire, canbuss signal fed 12/24 volt high tech vehicle. just one stop at a "county barn" with their mechanics working on it & kiss the electronics goodby. they didn't send me to school for 8 months to learn about a truck that anybody at the county barn could repair. there are many upgrades that this vehicle is probably due for, that means as it sits repair parts will only work after the upgrades, as the military only inventories parts for the latest levels. it took an act of congress to get parts for mrap's that were in the war, do you think you can get parts for them here? that truck will break down & just sit. any this sinking in boy?

fromtexasbygod
fromtexasbygod

Excerpt from  http://www.policeone.com/police-products/vehicles/specialty/articles/6401816-Police-militarization-and-the-argument-for-armored-vehicles/

"Oft-repeated claims that armored vehicle use by police with special weapons is a recent phenomenon are simply mistaken." 

"Police departments were developing highly specialized vehicles thirty years before the mythical Mayberry appeared on television. Most critics are completely unaware that American police once openly deployed vehicles and weapons far more offense than anything in regular use today. Modern armored vehicle use is based on decades of trial-and-error during the rescues of wounded citizens and police officers." 

"Despite hysterical tales to the contrary, police are not fielding “tanks” or vehicles with working main guns. A Bearcat in police hands is no more hazardous to freedom or safety than a fire truck. A police officer who cannot be trusted with an armored vehicle cannot be trusted with a .38 caliber revolver." 

“Four agencies in my county (including mine) have armored vehicles. Speaking as a taxpayer, father, and husband, I'm glad these vehicles are available in case of emergencies. Should my family ever need to be saved while bullets are flying, I want the police to arrive with enough personnel, weapons, and armor to conduct an effective rescue.

docroc
docroc

With these vehicles, coupled with domestic drone use and the NSA violating everyone's privacy, the onward march toward a police state seems well under way. 

craigslistrr
craigslistrr

The war in Iraq may have ended but it looks like the war on American civilians is still going strong, with local governments ramping up their military hardware to combat it's people...

bruce_taylor
bruce_taylor

I don't care how much it cost to buy.  I want to know who is paying for the maintenance on this thing?  Come on - really.  This is good use of tax money.   Think about it...  It won't fit on standard lift, the drive train is completely sealed in armor and has to be removed just to do basic maintenance, the tires, hubs and seals are all specialty parts probably single sourced from AMG.  Why do this?  The only purpose this serves is to intimidate.  Someone really needs to look at the cost of maintenance and management plan for these vehicles then fire the police chief.   

fromtexasbygod
fromtexasbygod

Nicholson just when I begin to believe you might have actually matured enough as a journalist to shy away from writing yet another dumb assed article you out do yourself.  It was amusing how quickly you back pedaled from your initial claim that DSO acquired a "tank".  There is nothing new about police agencies obtaining FREE military surplus items, that's been going on for decades.   While I agree that military tactics are for the most part useless in real world law enforcement applications and am certainly no fan of Sheriff Lupe Valdez, only an idiot would become so alarmed because a major law enforcement agency in one the the largest metropolitan areas in the U.S. acquires a FREE low mileage armored vehicle that undeniably has great value for officer safety, rescue, and defensive purposes, and is of  little or no use for offensive capabilities. Maybe DSO will validate your irrational radical liberal anti law enforcement fears by mounting a 50 cal Ma Deuce on the damn thing and launching an attack on 2501 Oak Lawn Ave.  Yet another example of the significant decline at the D.O. since Wilonsky cut out. 

burkanuck
burkanuck

Wow. The continued militarization of the US domestic police forces and it is written up as a happy little story about the sad, lonely little armored personnel carrier who had nowhere to go and no one to love it finding a forever home. How touching.

It makes you want to cry...but because the idiot sheeple are so stupid and are allowing a police force sworn to serve and protect THEM instead being prepared to enslave them!

Wake up you bloody idiots! There is absolutely NO reason for a local police force to be obtaining these kinds of vehicles except to use the AGAINST you!

everlastingphelps
everlastingphelps topcommenter

Because there's no telling when North Texas might descend into sectarian warfare and start planting IEDs along Riverfront Boulevard.

If it did happen, this thing would be pretty much useless.  We do not have the logistical train to support it.  One MRAP is useless.  You need a whole FOB full of MRAPS.  Why?  Because it is designed to protect the crew, not the vehicle.  One blast, and it's a wreck, by design.  The wheels blow off, the engine is blown to pieces, etc.  It happens because all of that damage absorbs the energy from the blast so the V-shaped hull has less to deal with in protecting the crew.  


That makes perfect sense for an army that has a whole fleet of MRAPS.  You can send in more MRAPS much easier than you can send in more troops, so you make it where landmines and IEDs blow up MRAPS (crunch all you want, we'll make more) while the troops walk away to keep fighting.
Instead, Dallas has a vehicle where, if it is used for its intended purpose, it's a one-shot wonder that probably leaves them worse off than before, because now they have a disabled MRAP with a bunch of cops in it who can't fight back from within the vehicle (it's a transport, not a fighting vehicle) and no reaction force in its own MRAPS ready to come and bail them out.  Set a big fire under it, and you'll cook them to death in a pretty short order.
Meh.  I'm not afraid of stuffing this thing with 1200 pounds of cold coffee and donuts and rolling it down the street.  If we the People want it taken out, it does down fast.

fherb666
fherb666

If these cost the same or less than standard SWAT vans, then there isn't a problem. No sense letting the vehicles go to waste.

Of course, if they're much more expensive, then it's a pretty stupid move considering that existing vehicles perform the job well enough.

noblefurrtexas
noblefurrtexas

Spend some time with some of Sheriff Valdez's deputies, and you'll know what a truly scary proposition this urban assault vehicle could be.

They don't need it, but will feel compelled to use it - mostly against white people - to justify having it.

That's just the way these things happen.

Elktrockn
Elktrockn

Wow.. total crap. There really is NO logical reason for ANY city police department in the US to have one of these. None. What's next? Are they going to get old Abrams tanks? "Decommissioned" Bradley's?  Why not Humvee's? Oh..wait.. even the up armored ones are still vulnerable to small arms fire and IED's....yeah, we can't have that just driving around the Big D. 

SafeTea
SafeTea

This is absolutely nuts!  Each month sees US police forces growing ever more militaristic.  They're actually crowing about using this military vehicle for ISSUING WARRANTS???  No domestic police force should have this kind of vehicle in their possession.

To protect and serve, or go on the attack?

mplynn
mplynn

Yet another move in the militarization of the police. I remember a gommer named Robert Whittaker from DHS who was talking (proudly) about his vehicle saying it was going to be used to serve warrants!   http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R6lTL8gYIc8  They used to be able to serve warrants in Ford Crown Vics and Chevrolet Caprice police cruisers, for a fraction of what one of these wagons cost.

The escalation toward these vehicles is just over the top. Another sign our government doesn't trust us and would want to take out patriotic resistors quickly and effectively.

scamsANDflams
scamsANDflams

with 5% of the world's population and 25% of the worlds prison population is this surprising to anyone?

kurt2088
kurt2088

We are under DPS seige in south Texas currently with OVER 150 officers setting up military type checkpoints all day, all night and EVERYWHERE! I thought when I moved to Texas, this would be the last state to become a military-gestapo type police state---Boy was I WRONG!

deedeebear
deedeebear

In a way maybe this is a good thing. Maybe just maybe the states will be able to fight off an oppressive government. Just a different spin

shearon_william
shearon_william

People, you better wake up and put these people in check while you still can. There pissing your money away, yea, that's your money. How many other good uses could that money been put to? No, they buy a tank to use on YOU. Yea, that's right, you. Its all funny till its at your door. Think they wont be looking for any reason to drive it around? O yea. What a waste! What a shame.

mwhitney1968
mwhitney1968

To serve warrants?  Gee, what a stealthy option.

papro_44
papro_44

Obama promised to build a civilian army, what better way to do it than using the military as an equipment  broker. I am just waiting for reports of surplus 12' fencing and razor wire being snatched up to start trickling in...... 

bangle0002
bangle0002

Nothing a good ol' 50 BMG armour piercing wont fix. Stock up and be ready . If the police want to be militarized for whatever lays ahead, so will "we the people".

Manilo
Manilo

The government should try selling those armored vehicles to the rich people in Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria. They really need the vehicles. In the USA we mostly need fancy gadgets to make our lives a bit happier. 

captainjerryhulick
captainjerryhulick

Sounds to me more like paranoia.  Either that or they just have a lot of money to spend before the year runs out.  Or, just maybe this is obammies private army gearing up, but for what????

shearon_william
shearon_william

Who do you think there going to use that on? What a waste of YOUR MONEY!!

joesphx
joesphx

It's gonna be fun when one of the guys gets all liquored up and climbs in for a long joy ride. The best part is that the police won't know how to stop him- forget Pitt maneuvers and nail strips. Yeehaw!

coastx
coastx

Fade military. Militarize police. No conflict of interest with Posse Comitatus for the coming riots.

normdegehr
normdegehr

As if we were in Israel with Paletinean douch-bags attacking us.  Waco, here we come!

fromtexasbygod
fromtexasbygod

@andyh1956 Sure you did sonny.  "According to Navistar Defense, the vehicle is designed with operational readiness in mind and utilizes standardized, easily available parts, to ensure rapid repair and maintenance."  So Andy my boy, you or Navistar Defense?  Wonder who is lying?  Drive by wire my ass.  Nice try dumbass.

fromtexasbygod
fromtexasbygod

Why would anyone want to fire the police chief?  The Dallas Police Dept has nothing to do with it. The Dallas Sheriffs Office is the agency that acquired the FREE armored vehicle and since Sheriff Lupe Valdez is an elected official, only the liberal Democrat majority voters of Dallas County can fire her in the 2016 election, and unfortunately those voters will probably continue to re-elect her for as long as the champion of the LGBT cause chooses to remain Sheriff.  And by the way, any shop capable of servicing heavy equipment such as bulldozers can easily service and replace parts on the FREE armored vehicle, and in Texas most Counties have maintenance barns with just such capability.  I don't know where your dumb ass if from, but you obviously know nothing about Dallas or law enforcement or heavy equipment maintenance.  "The only purpose this serves is to intimidate",   @bruce_taylor you are an absolute idiot.

noblefurrtexas
noblefurrtexas

@bruce_taylor You would have to drive this thing to Ft. Hood for maintenance.   This this is also a hazard to other civilian vehicles on the road in an emergency.

jcalhounohio
jcalhounohio

@everlastingphelps  You are sooo correctt.  This vehicle meant for wide open terrain not for urban combat.  If positioned above this vehicle, you can reign down fire on what Tom Hanks called in Saving Private Ryan, the Murder Holes!  You will wind up killing more cops than saving them.  Designed for convoy duty and they are not like the Urban up armored vehicles (like the commercial vehicles ie Bearcats).  Maxxpro DXM is too heavy and too wide to use on urban streets.

Dallas PD pull the horns out of their vehicle?  I have spent a couple of hours today trying to find the correct one's from NAVISTAR Defense!  If we had parted out these vehicles we could have saved the taxpayers thousands (we are still buying new parts used in the vehicles with your tax dollars.  Did you see the pictures from the Afghanistan AO where we are cutting them up?  I am sure that Dallas has some very good vehicle recyclers (salvage yards) who could do this for the DoD.

I have been working on the 26 MRAP variants longer continuously than anyone else.  These are not armored cars they are Weapons of War. Meant for use by our combat troops not by police.

ThePosterFormerlyKnownasPaul
ThePosterFormerlyKnownasPaul topcommenter

@kurt2088  

That is because you are within the federal border zone which extends 75 miles from the border or to the nearest major crossroads more than 75 miles from the border.  Within the federal border zone any vehicle may be stopped without reason to determine if an ICE law or regulation has been broken.

When you are stopped you should be able to state that you are a US citizen and be allowed to proceed without being searched or questioned unless a reasonable suspicion exists that you have broken a law or are committing some crime.  If you are asked if your vehicle may be searched, politely decline and ask the officer why he wants to search your vehicle.  Do not get out of your vehicle unless the officer gives you a reason to get out of your vehicle.

It sucks but with the flow of illegal aliens, err excuse, persons entering without authorization; and, the drug trade, it is not surprising.  Be very careful about who you look at when you are close to the border as they may shoot back.

MarkMatis
MarkMatis

@deedeebear The FedPigs do not even REMOTELY consider letting any of these or the other military toys go to any "Law Enforcement" agency that will not grovel before them when TSHTF.

everlastingphelps
everlastingphelps topcommenter

 @papro_44 I like to think of it as him helpfully prepositioning equipment for the militias when we decide to throw the bums out of DC.

rmward
rmward

And some of the Founders explicitly stated that the people had the right to be armed with whatever the military had - if they could afford it.

MarkMatis
MarkMatis

@joesphx What makes you think they would even try?  As a "professional courtesy", they will let him do what he wants and then give him a ride home to sober up when he's done.  Or haven't you seen how they handle drunk drivers when they KNOW it's a pig?

mrsatyre
mrsatyre

@fromtexasbygod "you are an absolute idiot." said the absolute idiot. How about you back up your insults with facts, smart guy? Like justifying the need for this FREE armored vehicle? How often does the sheriff's department get fired at with RPGs or drive over or past IEDs? Any shop, huh? And all the extra time and materials required to service it because it's simply not a run-of-the-mill truck is insignificant, right? After all, it uses exactly the same materials and parts as any other big machine, right? 

 What a moron.

bruce_taylor
bruce_taylor

@fromtexasbygod Thanks man, I got the sheriff confused with the Police Chief, yep.  Thanks for the clarity.  Just to be absolutely clear, there's NOTHING free about this vehicle.  It's just like all the HMMWVs the military gave for free to sheriff depts that end up either sitting in a field somewhere falling apart or cost them a ton on maintenance.  At least with the humvee's there was an outside chance of finding competent mechanic.  If you think any field maintenance shop can work on an MRAP you're deluding yourself. Go look for shop manuals and start reading.  Maybe you can get a job and perhaps improve yourself.

fromtexasbygod
fromtexasbygod

@mrsatyre  "What a moron" said the moron.  Yes dumbass, it does use the same parts as "any other big machine" because it was built using the simple run of the mill International Workstar 7000 chassis commonly used in other commercial vehicles such as dump trucks, and wreckers.  Another thing dumbass, the Navistar Defense MaxxPro was specifically designed to utilize standardized easily available parts and removable bolt on armor plates for ease of maintenance.  

fromtexasbygod
fromtexasbygod

@mrsatyre  Yes dumbass, it is low mileage, it was only used at Ft. Hood for training purposes and only had 10,000 miles.  Read the fucking article dumbass.  And yes dumbass, I take Crestor daily.

mrsatyre
mrsatyre

@fromtexasbygod @bruce_taylor Please rest your voice. Either that or detail all the times your precious SWAT team has been attacked in their plain ol' ordinary tin-can armored cars. And low-mileage? Are you on drugs?

fromtexasbygod
fromtexasbygod

@bruce_taylor  Here ya go dumbass. 

 http://www.lencoarmor.com/law-enforcement/bearcat-variants/

The Lenco BearCat is the armored vehicle of choice for Dallas PD SWAT.  The City of Dallas owns 2 and you better believe Dallas finest gets their moneys worth out of a vehicle that protects one the the nations top SWAT teams. The sticker price is north of $300K , and yes even the most hardened Dallas criminal shivers at even the thought of such an intimidating police resource.  Sounds like DSO got a hell of a deal on the FREE low mileage military surplus vehicle.

fromtexasbygod
fromtexasbygod

Get a job?  Man I don't think so, except for some occasional part time work, a real job would interfere with the farming, leisure, and travel time my pension, 401K, and investments provide after putting in 35 years with the same outfit "improving myself".  Bruce my boy you might well achieve the rating of world class dumbass if you really believe it is not possible to find a competent heavy equipment mechanic in Dallas County capable of performing routine maintenance on a vehicle that DSO won't put another 10K miles on over the next 10 years, but then again all the mechanics might be too "intimidated" at the sight of an armored surplus military vehicle.

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