Jan 11, 2023

Local church donates rifle resistant vest to Alliance Police Department

Posted Jan 11, 2023 4:42 PM

Panhandle Post

During the Jan. 3 Alliance City Council meeting, the council approved the donation of a rifle resistant vest to the Alliance Police Department from the Evangelical Free Church of Alliance.

Councilwoman Tearza Mashburn asked a few questions about the vest.

"Our officers have a vest that they already use for on duty purposes," Alliance Police Chief Philip Lukens said. "This is a plate carrier vest that is used over and above for extreme circumstances, our current vest does not stop rifle rounds. Our vest would handle most pistol rounds and that sort of thing. So, when you have an active shooter situation, officers would be entering that type of situation, they wouldn't have coverage from our current vest. And so we are working toward having in our strategic planning for next year to get rifle plate carriers for all of our officers in the event that they get deployed on an active shooter type of situation. So, that vest would stop a rifle."

Mashburn asked if the vest was chosen by Chief Lukens.

The vest was chosen by Alliance Police Officer Seth McLaughlin.

Alliance Mayor Mike Dafney asked, "Is this something that goes over like the regular vest or a shield that you carry?"

"We have shields we purchased with some asset forfeiture money last year," Lukens said. "That helps us for intervene, but there's nothing to protect the body, so the officer would carry this [outer carrier plate carrier vest] in the car. They would throw that vest over their uniform when they're going in, put on a helmet and they would go in."

Alliance City Manager Seth Sorenson said the vest donation to the APD is very appreciated.

"It also makes a great difference in how the community reacts when there are challenges that need to be addressed," Sorenson said during an interview with KCOW Radio.