Lenco BearCat G3 (courtesy lencoarmor.com)

Press release:

Pittsfield, MA – Lenco Industries, Inc., the global leader in the design and manufacture of armored police vehicles, will highlight its proven BearCat® armored tactical vehicle at the 2014 SHOT Show ®, January 14-17 at the Sands Expo Center in Las Vegas, Nevada. The BearCat® G3, belonging to the Boise Police Tactical Team, will be at booth #1261. In total, over 550 Law Enforcement Agencies in the US rely on Lenco BEARs and BearCats every day, including 32 State Police Agencies . . .

The BearCat G3 on display at the SHOT Show is a Four Door variant, which offers 5 entry and egress points on the vehicle. This functionality greatly enhances tactical response and rescue capabilities in tight urban settings and Active Shooter scenarios where protected access to downed personnel is critical. In addition, this BearCat G3 features Lenco’s Hydraulic RAM and a host of Low Profile lighting and communications equipment. Also included is Lenco’s award winning gas injector unit, which won a 2011 Tactical Innovation Award. Mounted on the vehicle’s hydraulic ram, this unique tool allows for controlled delivery of chemical agents into a hostile environment from the safety of an armored BearCat®.

In addition to the G3, Lenco US and International Sales Reps will be on hand to discuss their other military and law enforcement BearCat® models. These include: the standard BearCat G2 variant, the MedCat, designed specifically for interoperability between SWAT and Tactical EMS personnel, and the BombCat, a design driven by the needs of ordinance disposal teams and the growing threat of homemade explosive devices.

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About Lenco Industries, Inc. Lenco Industries designs, develops and manufactures armored security vehicles for law enforcement, military, government and private security forces working to safeguard our nation’s homeland security as well as downrange in Iraq and Afghanistan. Lenco’s client base includes the nation’s most prestigious law enforcement agencies, including the Los Angeles Police Department, LA Sheriff Department, Boston Police Department and the New York Police Department. Lenco has also designed and built Special Forces armored vehicles for the US Department of Defense. Lenco is a supplier to the US State Department, Department of Energy, ATF, US Marshals and other high profile government agencies. Lenco’s product line includes the BEAR armored SWAT truck, and several variants of the BearCat, including the G4 M-ATV, MedEvac and VIP armored vehicles. For more information, visit www.LencoArmor.com. –

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74 Responses to Barney Get Your Gun: Police Militarization Marches On

  1. As much as I’d like to chastize the need for these vehicles, one of these would have been VERY useful during the Laurel Canyon shootout . Pulling out wounded LEOs under AK fire with a Chevy Caprice didn’t look fun for the participants.

    • They have their purposes for sure.
      The did for the troops in the Middle East.
      But does every local PD need one??
      I think not.
      A borrowed Banks armored car could have served the same purpose in Laurel Canyon.

      • The problem is when the LEO’s that want those up-armored APCs also want the people to NOT have the AK, AR, or *insert favorite modern sporting rifle here* they need to defend themselves. Most of these cops push wholeheartedly for the militarization AND gun control. They willfully ignore the historical outcome of the people being out-gunned and defenseless. I think this vid illustrates the point nicely:

        • I liked the video a lot, and I even use those statistics on occasion. But, (there always is one 🙂 ) Alex Jones is about as polarizing as they come and most often received as very negative and yelling. Mostly just that I think a lot of people lose the message and tune out entirely when they see Jones or WLP (just examples). Just a thought.

          EDIT: I just watched the vid again and I SWEAR that Jones is either mixed at a higher volume or Im losing my mind.

        • UH-OH. You’ve done it now! Alex Jones and staff!! OH NO!!!!

          Let the irrationalities commence.

        • “Most of these cops push wholeheartedly for the militarization AND gun control. They willfully ignore the historical outcome …”

          I’d almost be willing to bet real money that there are some cops that are fully aware of the historical outcome, and that’s exactly what they’re going for.

  2. Just what every local PD needs an armored car.
    Make folks feel much safer this way.
    When the jack booted thugs come for you.
    You know you will be riding in last years ex road side bomb protected vehicle.
    Since you already paid for it with your taxes.
    Your local PD can get for the unbelievable low low price of $2000 from your favorite used vehicle dealer Unkule Sammy.
    Gets yours today Mr PD.
    Don’t feel left out!!!!

    • Exactly. I’d shake my head if my local PD acquired a used MRAP, but I’d be VERY pissed if they spent (I’m guessing) 1/4 to 1/2 million on one of these.

    • Beat me by a few seconds….

      “Militarized police” arguments aside, it seems like a lousy business model….

    • Because these can actually do stuff. MRAPs are good bullet shields, but that’s literally all they can do. Try to drive one off the road here in Florida and it quickly goes from a mobile platform to a fortified bunker. These are smaller, lighter, and are designed to deal with the stuff cops in the U.S. might have to deal with, as opposed to stuff in Sand-istan. MRAPs carry an huge pile of extra armor on the bottom to deal with the threat of mines, something extraordinarily unlikely here. BearCats have bigger doors, better visibility, etc.

      Any little piddling town can get an MRAP for a couple grand, but if I was a cop in a location that had call to actually use an armored vehicle with any regularity, I think I’d much rather have one of these.

  3. Police departments should AT LEAST be required to paint these military vehicles in the same color scheme as their marked patrol cars.

    I remember going to mainland China in the 90’s and seeing teenage boys in military uniforms armed with AK’s standing along the sidewalks of Guangzhou thinking that could never happen in MY country, but fast-forward twenty years and here we go… perpetual war overseas and unfettered militarization in the homeland.

    • They should be required to be safety orange or red and white, etc. Most PDs have gone to all black cars to intentionally appear menacing. To whom? Just criminals, or all of us?

      • Not sure where you live, but virtually all the law enforcement agencies in areas I frequent are still using the predominantly white color scheme. The only exception I can think of is the Florida Highway Patrol—black cars with tan greenhouses—but that color scheme goes back 40 years or more. The chargers look fantastic in that scheme, menacing as hell. That’s the first really good looking car they’ve had since they stopped driving Fox-bodied Mustangs.

        • I realize it varies wildly (I’m in TX). Mostly it’s the small towns with fairly high budgets I’m referring to (classic speed trap towns, ripe for militarization). Dallas and Houston etc are still classic black and white as far as I recall. Menacing the public is pretty low on the agenda when there’s an endless supply of actual criminals.

        • We have a part-time PD in a nearby small town (Pop. 430) that went full-on tacticool with their vehicles and unis. Their whole MO is looking like ninjas and running speed traps on a couple state highways that run near, but not through, their town. They seem oblivious to the fact that they are the butt of a lot of jokes by LE’s in the surrounding jurisdictions that have trained with them on occasion.

      • The newest Chevy Tahoes in the Grand Blanc PD are all black with a kind of matte black lettering that is hard to see from most angles, and (very) low profile light bars with most of the lighting inside the grille or hidden in the body panels.

        I can’t complain though, for a well-off town only a few miles from Flint, we haven’t done the whole militarization thing from what I can see.

  4. “550 Law Enforcement agencies rely on the Bearcat on a daily basis???” OMG! They must be getting attacked rather viciously out there! I hadn’t realized that the “war on cops” had actually broken out! Ummmm…which side of that are we on again??

  5. I wonder if Blackwater’s… oops, sorry… Academi’s Bear Paw Vehicle Barrier System could stop Lenco’s BearCat G3?

    Bear Paw vs BearCat!

    • They are missing a great business opportunity.

      They should be building civilian versions of this thing on an F-150 chassis using either fiberglass or sheet aluminum for the body panels and featuring a high-comfort interior with a quality stereo system.

      Kind of like the Hummer II – they could market it as the BearCub.

  6. From the Lenco website,
    “Salem, IL – It’s almost like driving a tank,” said Sgt. Jeff Mount of the Salem PD about the new Lenco BearCat. Salem PD showed off the newest addition to the Illinois Law Enforcement Alarm System (ILEAS) vehicle fleet on Monday.

    The Lenco BearCat is an armored vehicle that is being housed in Salem. It is one of nine of these types of vehicles to come to the state through a Homeland Security grant. The $225,000 vehicle is already being used by the military and for tactical operations in Iraq and is now showing up on the home front all across the country.

    The Lenco Bearcat was awarded to Salem for housing because SPD Chief Ron Campo is also the commander of the ILEAS Special Response Team for Weapons of Mass Destruction. The team consists of 23 specially trained members who are able to operate the Lenco BearCat in a 33-county area in the southern part of the state. The state is divided into 11 ILEAS regions, and the team covers Regions 9 and 11, consisting of a total of 33 counties. If any problems arise in those counties, the Bearcat is available to them.”

    To sum it up, It’s like a tank that costs $225,000 that the feds will buy for local law enforcement to use to find WMD’s. WTF

    • Seriously, I can’t tell you how offended I am to hear the words “on the home front” used in this context. The name “Homeland Security” is creepy to begin with, but to hear the jargon of war normalized for domestic policing use is just to see the flame under the pot holding the frog slowly doing its work.

    • The 2a covers a lot of things that are still illegal in these times. Shaped charges will likely get you in trouble.

      However, a 12 pounder muzzle loading cannon is likely legal just about everywhere outside of DC and NYC. Wonder if that bearcraps armor will stop a solid iron shot from a 12 pounder?

      • Now THAT is an idea. Old school marches on! Hell, I’d settle for a nicely portable 8 pounder. No need to go all John McClain on them. I suspect if it would not penetrate, it would damn sure give some people a headache that would take days and days to recover from.

      • When can a citizen own a 12 pounder ? I saw a Hotchkiss breech loaded mountain gun built in the 1890s that was exempt.

  7. Everything about modern police training and procedure is control. The rational is always prepare and execute as if every situation is a worse case one. No time for thinking or reason. Mission is all and until we the people take control and modify that mission it will get more and more militarized. One day (if not already) these vehicles will roll for zoning violations because hey, you never know. Nobody’s liberty is worth risking one LEO’s lives for right? Of course our military risks untold soldiers life to protect our liberty every day. Does that mean some day we’ll need the Marines to protect us from the police? Excuse me while cognitive dissonance rings in my ears.

  8. Again, I have great respect for the vast majority of cops. I was one once upon a time, my dad was chairman of the local police personnel board, most of his friends are cops, half my neighbors are cops.

    What amazes me about the current wave of police militarization is how little need there is for it. On duty deaths are near historic lows. Violent crime (in places where the proletariat is allowed to arm themselves) is at historic lows. Places were only the ruling class (and their pretorian guards) are allowed to arm themsleves are the only places were violent crime is up. Yet police chiefs cry out for the need for machine guns and armored vehicles.

    There are times and circumstances that call for no knock warrents and armored vehicles. But if you’re going to take down Pablo Escobar you can wait for the State Police or US Marshall Service SWAT Team. Barney Fife and the Mayberry PD don’t need a tank to serve a no knock warrant on Goober and the six bottles of untaxed hooch in his garage (though I suppose the modern example woult be the three canabis plants under the UV light in his hall closet).

    • What amazes me about the current wave of police militarization is how little need there is for it.

      Police forces aren’t militarized to respond to violence, but in anticipation of it. The real standard of living for median US households has been falling for more than 29 years, while government-imposed transfers to the jobless, skill-less, and government employees have been rising over that period. The median household is slow to perceive the rising taxes because most of them are hidden, as in cell-phone and cable TV surcharges, gasoline taxes, user fees, and medical billing jacked to cover the no-pay crowd. I’d militarize too if I was nowhere near the median income household, being either much above or much below that number.

  9. Remember the president said we need a civilian force here at home as strong or stronger than our military to protect us. From who, he didn’t say; but I think it might just be we the people.

    • I think it might be “they, the people” in their handbook.

      In Afghan? Wait until you come home and, after being sent without option to put your life in the middle of a life-destroying lawless foreign death pit, with strict accountability for each casualty you cause, you hear the various ‘public servant’ unions demanding even more pay, personal days, and safety. Make sure you post here when that time comes.

      • The ROE here is insane. You cannot shoot unless you are being shot at. If the bad guy ducks out of sight you have to wait to be shot at again before you shoot back. He may have put his weapon down. Is it any wonder why 72% of deaths in Afghanistan have happened in the last 5 years. I have been here since Sept 2012 and go home soon. I was a Baston last year when it was attacked with the greatest loose to Marine aviation since Vietnam. I do not see how it can be much more insane.

  10. I examined this issue late last year with all the MRAPs and other things going to LEOs; http://wp.me/p45P9s-5Y.

    It’s a little disconcerting to see that so many of the weapons of war are coming home here in the US and then being placed in a position to basically turn Downtown USA into the next battlefield.

    • It has really ramped up since The Walking Dead became popular. Maybe they’re all REALLY, REALLY scared of walkers.

    • Weapons of war? Are they mounting crew served weapons on their armored cars? Rocket launchers? 20mm Bushmaster chain canons? If not, you might want to be careful about how you go about labeling things as “Weapons of War”…

      • Well, take a look at the gun mount on the roof in the picture of the vehicle subtly labeled “Police.” Now what were you saying?

  11. The militarization of local police and sheriff’s depts. is just one of the steps before a nationalized police force. Anyone that supports militarization of police supports a national police force. While of course vehicles like this have some use for major cities most police depts do not need such things.

    • We already have nationalized police – the DHS police and the Federal Protective Service. And the uniformed branches of many other agencies.

  12. Does this serve as justification to recognize those damn RPG’s I’ve always wanted as falling under the 2nd Amendment?

  13. Anyone who watched The A-Team as a kid growing up knows you can build an armored vehicle out of bulldozer parts, a few steel drums and a nice propane torch.

    • They already do, they sell them to police departments, not the military. As much as they hate to admit it, LEO’s are civilians.

      • They sell them to police depts, not LEO’s. A dept is not a human so it is also not a civilian. If they start selling them to LEO’s directly (like they do ‘assault weapons’ and ‘high cap mags’ in certain places where they’re otherwise forbidden) then we have a big problem. No LEO should get to own something that others aren’t allowed to own. Explosives techs don’t get to use C4 in their backyard when they aren’t on the job. Military don’t get to bring home their Mk19 grenade launches when they’re on leave. Why should police be different?

  14. I miss the 1970’s when what few big city SWAT teams there were rode around in what was basically a UPS truck, like in the old T.V. show.

  15. I’m starting to think we need to remind police departments that no matter how many stripes they have on their sleeves or stars, bars, and oak leaves on their collars, they are not in actually in the military.

  16. Let’s go back to the old days of policing.

    I miss being able to beat confessions out of people.

    I miss being able to beat people rather than take them to jail.

    I miss being able to beat people who mouth off.

    I miss being able to send people to the ER for fighting me.

  17. Russians destroyed many German tanks with bottles filled with gas. Afghans destroyed many Russian tanks with tarp covered pits. These type of vehicles depend on external fire support to survive. They also depend on a submissive populace.

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