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Tue, July 23

Board of Supervisors approves money for new SWAT vehicle

Lenco Bearcat (Lenco Armored Vehicles/Courtesy)

Lenco Bearcat (Lenco Armored Vehicles/Courtesy)

PRESCOTT -- It is out with the old and in with the new for the Yavapai County Sheriff’s Office.

At the Yavapai County Board of Supervisors meeting Wednesday, Feb. 6, Sheriff Scott Mascher asked for help with buying a new tactical vehicle for the YCSO’s Special Weapons and Tactics team.

Mascher laid out the case to the Board of Supervisors as to why the SWAT team needs a new armored vehicle. He began by explaining the current vehicle the team uses was donated to the Sheriff’s Office a while ago and it is starting to break down.

He said the vehicle has had $50,000 put into it, which was just to keep it running.

This past month the vehicle broke down during a SWAT raid in Ash Fork and the Sheriff’s Office had to ask another agency for help to rescue the deputies, Mascher told the board.

SWAT, Mascher added, averages about one call a month. “I think we would be using a vehicle like this for not only monthly training, but also have it available countywide for the situations we are finding ourselves in,” Mascher said.

The concern for Mascher was the new vehicle’s cost. Mascher and his office looked for a vehicle that would be cost-effective, reliable and have durability. YCSO is looking at the Lenco Bearcat.

The price tag for the Lenco Bearcat is $325,660, he said, adding that he has a majority of the money for the vehicle, but is about $50,000 short.

Usually, Mascher would come to the Board of Supervisors and make the Lenco Bearcat purchase a budget item, but it takes about one year for one of the vehicles to be made.

Mascher hopes he can find the $50,000 before the fiscal year ends, but he asked the supervisors to take money out of the General Fund for the purchase, in case he can’t find the money.

“Today it is a lot different in law enforcement,” Supervisor Jack Smith said. “You not only need the support of the public, but you need the support of the elected officials, including yourself Mr. Sheriff, to support those men and women in uniforms doing the job every day.”

The Supervisors voted unanimously to approve the Sheriff’s request.

In other business, the supervisors accepted a grant of $25,000 from the State of Arizona to establish an Opioid Fatality Review Team in Yavapai County.

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