COLUMNS

The Police Vehicles of Ferguson, Missouri

Staff Writer
Mount Shasta Herald
St. Louis County Police Special Equipment VehicleFenton-High Ridge Patch, St. Louis County PoliceMissouri State Highway Patrol Lenco BearCat LE

The BearCat LE is produced by Lenco in the town of Pittsfield, Massachusetts. "BearCat" is actually an acronym for Ballistic Engineered Armored Response Counter Attack Truck. The vehicle is based on a Ford F-550 Super Duty chassis, and powered by either a Triton V-10 or a 6.7-liter Turbo Diesel, with a six-speed automatic transmission.

The body is 1/2"-thick steel and the glass can withstand "multiple rounds of up to .50 caliber." The BearCat features blast-resistant floors and gun ports. The hatch on the roof allows personnel to ride high in the wind, while the dual air conditioners keep up to 10 heavily armed peace officers cool in the heat.

In 2010, an offender in Athens, Texas fired 35 rounds from an AK-47 at tactical police without a round entering the BearCat. In June, 2012, the Central Bucks Emergency Response Team took 28 rounds from a high-powered rifle, with similar results.

The BearCat LE is primarily used by law enforcement, and the company also produces a Military Model with four doors and a turret for a .50 caliber or a Dillon Mini Gun. The G3 edition (shown above, in use by the Nashville Police Department) is similar to the LE, but features four-wheel drive.

Lenco also produces a Riot Control model with a hydraulic ram and an LRAD (Long Range Acoustic Device) designed to disperse crowds with ear-splitting noise.

The Patch article suggested that the cost for St. Louis County Police's Lenco was approximately $360,000. No word on the cost of the Missouri State Highway Patrol's Lenco, but the cost has to be similar.

Missouri State Highway PatrolMobile Command Unit

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