HUNTERSVILLE – Despite some delays, the Huntersville Police Department now has a BearCat.
The BearCat is a Lenco armored vehicle that can assist in rescues and other efforts.
The vehicle was delivered to the department July 23, and the community got a chance to see it during National Night Out on Aug. 2.
“We were looking for a vehicle that could meet the needs of a rescue vehicle,” Capt. Scott Sharp of the Huntersville Police Department, said.
He had been looking to get a BearCat for a while to replace the department’s previous vehicle, which was a Brinks armored truck. The BearCat offers more protection as well as upgrades and features that were not present on the Brinks truck, Sharp said.
The department purchased the BearCat from the Alexandria Police Department in Virginia for $30,000. The vehicle is about 13 years old, and the usual price for a used one is around $165,000. The Alexandria department was planning to get a new armored vehicle, but due to some government contracts that delayed their new vehicle, the delivery of the BearCat to Huntersville was put off for some time.
Sharp said they are glad to now have the vehicle, which is fully operational though they are planning to add an HVAC system in the back and a few other things, he said.
“I think it’s an invaluable tool for law enforcement. It will increase safety for the police officers, emergency medical services workers and the citizens when and if we have to get into a situation in which we have to go into a hot zone or area where we could take gun fire,” Huntersville Police Chief Cleveland Spruill said.
The BearCat is a defensive vehicle that can be used in rescue situations. It has less than 6,000 miles on it and, along with its delivery, the department also received its maintenance records from the Alexandria Police Department, he said.