CBC: Winnipeg buys $343K armoured vehicle for officers
The Winnipeg Police Service’s purchase of a $342,800 armoured personnel vehicle is part of a distressing trend, a University of Manitoba professor says.
Frank Cormier, a criminology professor at the University of Manitoba, was surprised and “even a little bit disappointed” when he heard about it.
“The idea of militarizing police, this is something that we’ve been seeing throughout North America, throughout the world, for the past decade or two. It’s rather distressing to those who study police and public relations,” he said.
The police are intended to serve and protect but instead, they can start to appear as if they are the enemy, Cormier said.
“People tend to feel more afraid when they see an armoured vehicle in the streets of their city, so these things can actually reduce the sense of safety.”
…Cormier said he couldn’t think of any time in recent years that such a vehicle would have been helpful.
“Certainly an armoured vehicle of some sort will protect police officers while they are inside it, but at some point the police will have to engage with a person or persons that they are looking to apprehend,” he said. “So unless they’re prepared to remain inside the vehicle and use the gun ports to conduct an armed battle with someone or several people, I don’t see on a regular basis how that will be a great deal of use.”